Deficient Expression of Tumor Necrosis Factor Receptor Type 2 in the Endometrium of Women with Endometriosis

Authors

  • Abdelaziz Kharfi,

    1. Centre de Recherche, Hôpital Saint-François d'Assise, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada;
    2. Département d'Obstétrique et Gynécologie, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada
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  • Yves Labelle,

    1. Centre de Recherche, Hôpital Saint-François d'Assise, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada;
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  • Jacques Mailloux,

    1. Département d'Obstétrique et Gynécologie, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada
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  • Ali Akoum

    1. Centre de Recherche, Hôpital Saint-François d'Assise, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada;
    2. Département d'Obstétrique et Gynécologie, Faculté de Médecine, Université Laval, Québec, Canada
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Address reprint requests to Dr Ali Akoum, Centre de recherche, Hôpital Saint-François d'Assise, 10, rue de l'Espinay, Local D0-711, Québec, Canada G1L 3L5. E-mail: ali.akoum@crsfa.ulaval.ca

Abstract

Problem: Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) is secreted mainly during the menstrual phase and has been suggested to play a role in induction of apoptosis in endometrial cells and menstrual shedding. TNF-α receptor type 2 (TNF-RII) is believed to play a central role in TNFα-mediated cytotoxic, mitogenic, anti-proliferative and apoptotic effects. The aim of this study was to assess whether TNF-RII maybe expressed differentially in the endometrium of women with different degrees of endometriosis.

Method of study: TNF-RII expression in the endometrial tissue of women with and without endometriosis was investigated by immunohistochemical techniques and in situ hybridization.

Results: In histological sections, we observed TNF-RII mRNA and the corresponding protein localized mainly in endometrial glandular cells, with only very faint immunostaining in the surrounding stromal cells. Statistical analysis of our data showed a significant decrease in protein and mRNA expression of TNF-RII in endometrial glandular cells of patients with stages I and II endometriosis compared to normal subjects. TNF-RII expression was also found to decrease significantly in the secretory phase of the menstrual cycle in women with early endometriosis stages (I and II).

Conclusions: In view of the relevant role of TNF-RII in the modulation of the inflammatory and the proapoptotic effects of TNFα, deficient expression of TNF-RII mRNA in the endometrium of women at the earliest stages of endometriosis may play a significant role in the pathophysiology of this disease.

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