Retinol-binding protein: immunolocalization of protein and abundance of messenger ribonucleic acid in conceptus and maternal tissues during pregnancy in pigs. Academic Article uri icon


  • Retinol-binding protein (RBP) is a major secretory product of liver as well as uterine endometrium and periimplantation conceptuses of pigs. The present study examined distribution of RBP protein and abundance of RBP mRNA in pig maternal and conceptus tissues throughout pregnancy. A porcine liver RBP cDNA clone was isolated and used as probe in these studies. Northern blot analysis detected a 1.0-1.1-kb transcript in conceptus, trophoblast, yolk sac, placenta, endometrium, myometrium, oviduct, and numerous fetal tissues. Slot blot analyses of RBP mRNA abundance in endometrium, myometrium, conceptus, trophoblast, chorioallantoic placenta, and embryo/fetus indicated differential RBP gene expression in each tissue. Immunocytochemical localization studies indicated the presence of immunoreactive RBP in endometrial surface and glandular epithelium, circular and longitudinal muscle of myometrium, parenchymal cells of fetal liver, and proximal convoluted tubules of fetal kidney. Results suggest an integrated system of RBP gene expression and protein secretion that allows for transport of retinol from the uterine endometrium to the periimplantation conceptus during early pregnancy and to the fetal-placental unit throughout pregnancy in pigs.

published proceedings

  • Biol Reprod

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Harney, J. P., Smith, L. C., Simmen, R. C., Fliss, A. E., & Bazer, F. W.

citation count

  • 24

complete list of authors

  • Harney, JP||Smith, LC||Simmen, RC||Fliss, AE||Bazer, FW

publication date

  • May 1994