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Influence of ovarian steroid hormones on the uterine environment and remodeling of the endometrial extracellular matrix in mice

Grant number: 10/52543-0
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: March 01, 2011 - February 28, 2013
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Morphology - Histology
Principal Investigator:Telma Maria Tenório Zorn
Grantee:Telma Maria Tenório Zorn
Home Institution: Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas (ICB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The Laboratory of Biology of Reproduction and Extracellular Matrix has been dedicated to the study of the structure and physiology of the mouse endometrium, for its importance in the maternal-fetal interface during pregnancy. Several of these functions are modulated by the ovarian sex hormones estrogen and progesterone, and hormonal imbalance may alter the reproductive cycle and impede decidualization. Moreover, our studies have shown that extracellular matrix (ECM) components-are remodeled along pregnancy. We have recently demonstrated that versican is modulated during the estrous cycle and after ovariectomy followed or not by hormone replacement. Interestingly, this remodeling is quite distinct among the different uterine compartments. Our molecular analyses showed no direct correlation between gene expression and protein deposition in the ECM. Three possible hypotheses must be considered: (i) post-transcriptional modifications that affect RNA stability and protein synthesis; (ii) the action of metalloproteinases that cleave the ECM; (iii) the existence of distinct cell populations in the endometrium. Thus, we propose: (i) to verify whether versican mRNA stability is altered under the influence ofestradiol and progesterone; (ii) to analyze the expression and distribution of members of the metalloproteinase family, in the uterine tissues. (AU)