Bacterially-induced preterm labor and regulation of prostaglandin-metabolizing enzyme expression in mice: the role of toll-like receptor 4

Hao Wang, Emmet Hirsch
Biology of Reproduction 2003, 69 (6): 1957-63
Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR-4) is a critical mediator of the cellular response to lipopolysaccharide. Our purpose was to examine the role of TLR-4 in parturition and in the regulation of expression of prostaglandin synthase (cyclooxygenase [COX]-1 and COX-2) and 15-hydroxyprostaglandin dehydrogenase (PGDH) following exposure to heat-killed Escherichia coli (HKE) in pregnant mice. Inbred TLR-4-mutant C3H/HeJ mice and inbred normal C3HeB/FeJ mice on Day 14.5 of a 19- to 20-day gestation received intrauterine injection of either HKE or sterile vehicle (PBS). Preterm or term delivery was recorded for these animals. Tissues (myometrium, decidual caps, placentas, fetal membranes, and fetuses) were collected after injection of sterile vehicle or 5 x 109 HKE bacteria (n = 5 mice per strain per treatment per time point). The COX-1, COX-2, and PGDH gene expression was determined by semiquantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. We found that 5 x 109 HKE induced preterm delivery in 100% of TLR-4-normal mice but in 0% of TLR-4-mutant mice. The HKE exposure up-regulated expression of COX-2, but not of COX-1, in maternal tissues in both mouse strains. The prostaglandin-catabolizing enzyme PGDH was down-regulated in myometrium, fetal membranes, and fetuses in control mice, but no change was observed in TLR-4-mutant mice after HKE treatment. These results demonstrate that a functional TLR-4 is essential for HKE-induced preterm labor and PGDH down-regulation but is not essential for HKE-induced COX-2 gene up-regulation. The TLR-4 may mediate bacterially induced preterm labor via regulation of prostaglandin degradation rather than prostaglandin synthesis.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"