Heparanase expression in term placentas of diabetic patients and healthy controls
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The prevalence of diabetic disorders in pregnancy is rising, which goes along with increased risks for maternal and foetal complications during pregnancy and delivery. The expression of the endo-β-d-glucuronidase, heparanase (HPSE), may increase under hyperglycaemic conditions, is believed to play an important role in diabetes associated morbidity outside the female reproductive tract and is expressed in the placenta throughout gestation. However, the placental expression of HPSE has not been investigated in diabetic patients.
Materials and methods
Placental biopsies of 30 patients with pre-existing or gestational diabetes and 30 healthy controls were analysed by real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry with regard to the presence of HPSE at term.
Patients and controls were comparable with respect to foetal outcome and maternal characteristics except for maternal body mass index. We were unable to show significant differences in placental HPSE expression between diabetic patients and healthy controls.
This study suggests that HPSE expression in term placentas is not affected by maternal diabetes and thus does not contribute to pathological processes in diabetic pregnancies with deliveries at term.
KeywordsPlacenta Heparanase Expression Diabetes Outcome RT-PCR Immunohistochemistry
The authors wish to thank Drs. Thorben Ahrens, Kristin Baumann, Schima Djalali, David Hartge, Friederike Hoellen and Katharina Kelling for their help in the collection of placental tissue. We would furthermore like to thank Stephan Polack, who contributed substantially to the accurate performance of the experiments.
Conflict of interest
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