Document Detail

Uterine glands provide histiotrophic nutrition for the human fetus during the first trimester of pregnancy.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12050279     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Providing adequate nutrition to the fetus is key to a successful pregnancy. The interstitial form of implantation displayed by the human blastocyst is generally associated with early onset of maternal blood flow to the developing placenta, and hence hemotrophic exchange. However, the recent finding that the maternal intraplacental circulation is not fully established until the third month of gestation suggests that human fetal nutrition may be initially histiotrophic. We therefore investigated activity of the uterine glands during early pregnancy. We demonstrate here that these glands remain active until at least wk 10 of pregnancy, and that their secretions are delivered freely into the placental intervillous space. We also demonstrate phagocytic uptake by the placental syncytiotrophoblast of two glycoproteins, the mucin MUC-1 and glycodelin A, synthesized in the maternal glands. Glycodelin was also detected within the epithelium of the secondary yolk sac lining the exocoelomic cavity, indicating that the yolk sac may play an important role in nutrient exchange before vascularisation of the chorionic villi. Our findings demonstrate that the uterine glands are an important source of nutrients during organogenesis, when metabolism is essentially anaerobic.
Graham J Burton; Adrian L Watson; Joanne Hempstock; Jeremy N Skepper; Eric Jauniaux
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism     Volume:  87     ISSN:  0021-972X     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab.     Publication Date:  2002 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2002-06-06     Completed Date:  2002-07-03     Revised Date:  2008-11-21    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0375362     Medline TA:  J Clin Endocrinol Metab     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  2954-9     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Department of Anatomy, University of Cambridge, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3DY, United Kingdom.
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MeSH Terms
Endocrine System / secretion*
Fetus / physiology*
Glycoproteins / metabolism
Microscopy, Electron
Mucin-1 / metabolism
Nutritional Physiological Phenomena / physiology*
Pregnancy / physiology*
Pregnancy Proteins / metabolism
Pregnancy Trimester, First
Uterus / secretion*,  ultrastructure
Yolk Sac / metabolism
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Glycoproteins; 0/Mucin-1; 0/PAEP protein, human; 0/Pregnancy Proteins

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