Lipopolysaccharide induces cytokine production and decreases extravillous trophoblast invasion through a mitogen-activated protein kinase-mediated pathway: Possible mechanisms of first trimester placental dysfunction

Lauren Anton, Amy G. Brown, Samuel Parry, Michal A. Elovitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Defects in extravillous trophoblast (EVT) function could contribute to placental dysfunction resulting in adverse obstetrical outcomes. Adverse obstetrical outcomes have been highly correlated with intrauterine infection; however, the mechanisms linking infection to placental dysfunction remain unclear. We investigated the effects of inflammation on EVT cytokine production and invasion early in pregnancy and determined the cell signaling pathways mediating this response. METHODS: AND RESULTSIn our model of inflammation, EVT cells, isolated following first trimester pregnancy terminations (n 6) were stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS). LPS induced a dose-dependent increase in interleukin (IL)-8 and IL-6 protein production (P < 0.01) and decreased EVT invasion (P 0.01) versus control. The LPS-mediated changes in cytokine production (P < 0.001) and invasion (P < 0.001) were reversed by dexamethasone (DEX). Exposure to LPS resulted in an increase in mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathway phosphorylation, including p44/42 MAPK (P < 0.01), p38 MAPK (P < 0.05), MAPK extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (MEK1/2) (P< 0.01) and stress-activated protein kinase/c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK; P < 0.001), which was reversed by DEX (P < 0.05) for all MAPKs except p38. MAPK-specific inhibitors to MEK1/2 (U0126), p38 MAPK (SB 202190) and JNK (SP 600125) significantly reversed the LPS-mediated increase in IL-6 (P < 0.001) and IL-8 (P < 0.001) production. While U0126 reversed the LPS-induced decrease in EVT invasion (P < 0.001), SB 202190 (P < 0.001) and SP 600125 (P< 0.001) decreased EVT invasion, further indicating that MEK1/2 phosphorylation may be inflammation dependent while p38 MAPK and JNK phosphorylation occurs independently of an inflammatory stimulus. CONCLUSIONS: LPS increased IL-8 and IL-6 and decreased EVT invasion through activation of MAPK signaling. MEK1/2 activation may contribute to placental dysfunction, in the setting of inflammation-associated adverse obstetrical outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-72
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Reproduction
Volume27
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • extravillous trophoblast
  • interleukin-6
  • interleukin-8
  • lipopolysaccharide
  • mitogen-activated protein kinase

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