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Gene Expression and Immunoreactivity of Elastolytic Enzymes in the Uterosacral Ligaments From Women With Uterine Prolapse

Abstract

Altered elastin metabolism has been documented in pelvic tissues from women with pelvic floor dysfunction. This study was conducted to quantify the expression of elastolytic enzymes in uterine cervix and uterosacral ligaments from women with uterine prolapse compared to asymptomatic normal controls. Paired tissues of uterosacral ligament and cervical tissues were obtained from 27 women with uterine prolapse and 14 normal controls. Steady state of matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP-2), tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase 2 (TIMP-2), neutrophil elastase, α-1 antitrypsin immunoreactivity, and messenger RNA (mRNA) expression were analyzed by immunohistochemistry and real-time polymerase chain reaction, respectively. When compared with controls, women with uterine prolapse had a significantly greater level of MMP-2 immunoreactivity and mRNA expression, but less TIMP-2 and α-1 antitrypsin immunoreactivity and mRNA expression in their uterosacral ligaments. However, neutrophil elastase mRNA expression was similar between uterine prolapse and control tissue. Our results showed that there was a close relationship between expressions of MMP-2, TIMP-2, and α-1 antitrypsin in uterosacral ligament and the occurrence of uterine prolapse.

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Correspondence to Hong-Yuan Huang MD.

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Liang, C., Huang, H. & Chang, S. Gene Expression and Immunoreactivity of Elastolytic Enzymes in the Uterosacral Ligaments From Women With Uterine Prolapse. Reprod. Sci. 19, 354–359 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1177/1933719111424443

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Keywords

  • antitrypsin
  • elastin
  • metalloproteinase
  • uterine prolapse