The expression and regulation of pregnancy-specific glycoproteins in the mouse
Williams, John M.
University College Cork
Pregnancy-Specific Glycoproteins (PSG) are the most abundant fetally expressed proteins in the maternal bloodstream at term. This multigene family are immunoglobulin superfamily members and are predominantly expressed in the syncytiotrophoblast of human placenta and in giant cells and spongiotrophoblast of rodent placenta. PSGs are encoded by seventeen genes in the mouse and ten genes in the human. Little is known about the function of this gene family, although they have been implicated in immune modulation and angiogenesis through the induction of cytokines such as IL-10 and TGFβ1 in monocytes, and more recently, have been shown to inhibit the platelet-fibrinogen interaction. I provide new information concerning the evolution of the murine Psg genomic locus structure and organisation, through the discovery of a recent gene inversion event of Psg22 within the major murine Psg cluster. In addition to this, I have performed an examination of the expression patterns of individual Psg genes in placental and non-placental tissues. This study centres on Psg22, which is the most abundant murine Psg transcript detected in the first half of pregnancy. A novel alternative splice variant transcript of Psg22 lacking the protein N1-domain was discovered, and similar to the full length isoform induces TGFβ1 in macrophage and monocytic cell lines. The identification of a bidirectional antisense long non-coding RNA transcript directly adjacent to Psg22 and its associated active local chromatin conformation, suggests an interesting epigenetic gene-specific regulatory mechanism that may be responsible for the high level of Psg22 expression relative to the other Psg family members upon trophoblast giant cell differentiation
PSG , Placenta , Trophoblast stem cells , Giant cells , Pregenancy-specific glycoproteins
Williams, J. M. 2013. The expression and regulation of pregnancy-specific glycoproteins in the mouse. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.