Effects of low molecular weight heparin and heparin-binding epidermal growth factor on human trophoblast in first trimester

Capsule:
This study shows that LMWH plays a role in the protection of the trophoblast by regulating proliferation, invasion, and differentiation. The HB-EGF is an important factor in the effects of LMWH on trophoblast function.

Authors:
Ying Chen, M.D., Xiao-Xia Wu, M.D., Jian-ping Tan, M.D., Mei-lan Liu, M.D., Ying-lin Liu, M.D, Ph.D., Jian-Ping Zhang, M.D.
Volume 97, Issue 3 , Pages 764-770, March 2012

Objective:
To evaluate the effects of low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) and heparin-binding epidermal growth factor (HB-EGF) on the biological function of human trophoblast in first trimester.

Design:
Control experiment.

Setting:
Two academic-based reproductive centers.

Patient(s):
The first trimester human placentas (gestational age, 5–10 weeks) from patients who underwent electively induced abortions.

Intervention(s):
Cultured trophoblast treated with LMWH or LMWH and HB-EGF.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
The biological function (proliferation, invasion, and differentiation) of trophoblast and the interaction between LMWH and HB-EGF on trophoblast in vitro.

Result(s):
1) At a dose of 0.25 IU/mL–2.5 IU/mL LMWH promoted trophoblast proliferation, enhanced their invasion, and increased hCG secretion. The LMWH had little effect or the opposite effect at other concentrations. These differences were statistically significant. 2) Combined use of LMWH and HB-EGF significantly promoted proliferation and invasion, but there was no difference in hCG secretion compared with solo LMWH or solo HB-EGF.

Conclusion(s):
The LMWH exerts a cytoprotective effect by regulating trophoblast proliferation, invasion, and differentiation. The HB-EGF is an important factor in the effects of LMWH on trophoblast function.

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