Neutrophil NETs: a novel contributor to preeclampsia-associated placental hypoxia?
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Recent studies have suggested that the innate immune system is involved in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. Its pathogenesis involves neutrophil activation and increased levels of cell-free DNA in the maternal plasma. Activation of neutrophils has recently been shown to induce DNA containing neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) which trap and kill bacteria. Massive NETs induction by the placentally derived factors (IL-8 and placental micro-debris) and their increased presence in preeclamptic placenta suggest that NETs might be involved in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. Therefore, increased presence of NETs in preeclampsia may play a role in the deficient placental perfusion associated with this disorder.
KeywordsNeutrophils IL-8 NETs STBM Placenta
We would like to thank Mr. Daniel Mathys (ZMB, University of Basel) for his excellent technical assistance with the scanning electron microscopy and Mrs. Vivian Kiefer-Vargas and Mrs. Lisbeth Dudler for their kind help in the preparation of specimens for microscopic analysis. We would also like to thank Dr. Susanne Gatfield for her help with fluorescence microscopy and Dr. Carolyn Troeger for placentae collection.
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