Localization and temporal expression of prolactin receptor in human endometrium

R. L. Jones, H. O D Critchley, J. Brooks, H. N. Jabbour, A. S. Mcneilly

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    Extrapituitary PRL is synthesized by the decidualized endometrial stromal cells from the mid to late secretory phase in the nonpregnant cycle and throughout pregnancy. The function of PRL in the uterus is unknown, but the temporal expression indicates a role in implantation and placentation. PRL is a powerful immunoregulatory agent, and thus, a role in modulating endometrial leukocytes may be envisaged. To investigate the site of action of PRL, immunohistochemistry was conducted to localize the PRL receptor (PRL- R). In addition, ribonucleic acid was extracted and reverse transcriptase- PCR for PRL-R was conducted. PRL-R protein was immunolocalized to the glandular epithelium and a subset of stromal cells from the mid to late secretory phase of the menstrual cycle and in early decidua. PRL-R transcripts were also detected from the late secretory phase and first trimester decidua. These findings indicate that the receptor is expressed in a temporal pattern similar to that of PRL. PRL-R expression in the glandular epithelium is consistent with a role in regulating glandular activity. Furthermore, immunoreactivity for PRL-R in a subset of stromal cells may be evidence for paracrine interactions between decidualized cells or an immunoregulatory role for PRL.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)258-262
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1998


    • cytology: Decidua
    • cytology: Endometrium
    • Female
    • Humans
    • Immunohistochemistry
    • Kinetics
    • metabolism: Menstrual Cycle
    • Polymerase Chain Reaction
    • Pregnancy
    • Pregnancy Trimester, First
    • analysis: Receptors, Prolactin
    • cytology: Stromal Cells


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