Spatial and temporal analyses of integrin and Muc-1 expression in porcine uterine epithelium and trophectoderm in vitro. Academic Article uri icon


  • The expression of the glycoproteins Muc-1 and integrin subunits (alpha1, alpha3, alpha4, alpha5, alpha(v), beta1, and beta3), all of which may be involved in the control of uterine receptivity, was examined in cultured porcine uterine epithelial (pUE) cells. Integrin subunit expression was also determined in trophoblastic vesicles generated from Day 12 and Day 15 pig conceptuses. Immunocytochemistry was performed on pUE cells cultured on several substrates (glass, serum, fibronectin, or Matrigel) in DME/F12 medium with 5% charcoal/dextran-stripped fetal bovine serum either containing no steroids or supplemented with estrogen, progesterone, or estrogen plus progesterone, or in medium with 5% complete fetal bovine serum. In addition, pUE cells were grown on Matrigel-coated Millicell filter inserts to facilitate development of structurally and functionally distinct apical and basal domains (i.e., polarized pUE cells) and were maintained in the same medium with supplements. The major findings in this investigation are that 1) Muc-1 and alpha1, alpha3, alpha4, alpha5, alpha(v), beta1, and beta3 integrin subunits are expressed on pUE cells in vitro; 2) Muc-1 and several integrin subunits are modulated by steroid hormones if culture conditions are provided that permit development of cell polarity; 3) the expression and steroid-induced modulation of Muc-1 and several integrin subunits in polarized pUE cells are similar to those detected in vivo; and 4) the expression of alpha1, alpha3, alpha4, alpha5, alpha(v), beta1, and beta3 integrin subunits by trophoblastic vesicles is identical to their expression on trophectoderm of intact conceptuses in vivo. These results suggest that the properties of polarized pUE cells and trophoblastic vesicles are comparable to those of their counterparts in vivo and are, therefore, useful as in vitro model systems to study conceptus-endometrial interactions during the periimplantation period and the control of uterine receptivity to implantation.

published proceedings

  • Biol Reprod

author list (cited authors)

  • Bowen, J. A., Bazer, F. W., & Burghardt, R. C.

citation count

  • 39

complete list of authors

  • Bowen, JA||Bazer, FW||Burghardt, RC

publication date

  • February 1997