Mosaic characteristics of human endometrial epithelium in vitro: analysis of secretory markers and cell surface ultrastructure.
AffiliationDepartment of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Glasgow, Royal Infirmary, 10 Alexandra Parade, Glasgow G31 2ER, UK.
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AbstractSpecific terminal carbohydrate structures and mucin-associated glycans increase in expression within the human endometrial epithelium during the secretory phase of the menstrual cycle but exhibit wide intercellular variation. We postulated that variation in glycosylation between cells would produce differences in the glycocalyx and result in complex mixtures of cells bearing different combinations of glycans. MUC-1 mucin, keratan sulphate and fucosylated lactosaminoglycans were examined in epithelial gland fragment cultures with antibodies (HMFG1, 5D4) and a lectin (Dolichos biflorus agglutinin). The glycocalyx was examined by transmission and high resolution scanning electron microscopy. The data were related to patterns of expression seen in vivo. The MUC-1 mucin was expressed relatively uniformly in culture, but heterogeneity was evident in mucin sialylation within the epithelial cell population. Double labelling of gland explant cultures for combinations of fucosylated lactosaminoglycans, keratan sulphate and MUC-1 demonstrated cells expressing all combinations of these markers. Ultrastructural examination confirmed remarkable intercellular variation in the glycocalyx. Though the human endometrial epithelium is relatively morphologically homogeneous, these observations reveal complex variations of cell surface glycosylation between neighbouring cells and suggest that secretory function might vary in a similar fashion.
CitationMosaic characteristics of human endometrial epithelium in vitro: analysis of secretory markers and cell surface ultrastructure. 2000, 6 (1):41-9 Mol. Hum. Reprod.
JournalMolecular Human Reproduction
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