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Cytokine. 1995 May;7(4):364-71.

Screening for cytokine mRNA in human villous and extravillous trophoblasts using the reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

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Department of Pathology, University of Cambridge, UK.


During the process of placental implantation, sessile villous trophoblast cells migrate from the villi into the decidua as isolated motile extravillous trophoblast cells. There is differential expression of the epidermal growth factor-receptor (EGF-R) and c-erbB2 proteins on villous and extravillous trophoblast populations. Using monoclonal antibodies to EGF-R and c-erbB2, we have obtained highly purified populations of villous and extravillous trophoblast by fluorescence activated cell sorting. These cells were examined by the reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) using nested internal primer pairs for the following cytokines: CSF-1, GM-CSF, TNF-alpha, TGF-beta1, IFN-gamma, IL-2, LIF and also for LIF-receptor. TNF-alpha and TGF-beta 1 were present in all trophoblast populations. GM-CSF and CSF-1 were only found in some samples, with preferential expression of CSF-1 in villous populations. IFN-gamma, IL-2 and LIF mRNA were not found, although all samples contained LIF-receptor mRNA. These cytokines (CSF-1, TGF-beta, TNF-alpha and GM-CSF) are likely to influence trophoblast growth and differentiation in an autocrine manner, since their receptors are also present on trophoblast. These results illustrate a quick and simple method to analyse for the presence of cytokine and other transcripts in trophoblast subpopulations during early pregnancy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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