Genome wide gene expression analysis of differential fetal cotyledons
ABSTRACT: In an attempt to unveil the molecular mechanisms of fetal-maternal interactions during early pregnancy, we have performed the pregnancy induced gene expression analysis in the gravid uteri of fetal cotyledons using the Affymetrix GeneChip Genome Array. In this study, we have performed the microarray analysis of the RNA isolated from fetal cotyledon tissue of Bubalus bubalis on less than 45 day of pregnancy. We have identified total of 8587 differentially expressed genes with significance p ≤ 0.05 in four biological replicates. Bioinformatics analysis of microarray data reveal the cluster of genes involved at the placentome level for various functions such as fetus attachment, transport of nutrition, and immune response. Interestingly, we have identified multiple isoforms of pregnancy associated glycoproteins (PAGs) which were highly up regulated with average fold change of 472.93 in pregnant buffaloes. It was observed the genes responsible for increased immune response were down regulated, suggesting an immune suppressive environment which is required to adapt the semiallogenic fetus for successful pregnancy. We have identified the genes and pathways involved during embryo development and the cluster of genes involved in fetal-maternal interaction, attachment, nourishment of fetus, and immune response. The present study will provide future directions for developing pregnancy diagnosis kit in livestock which is highly necessary for increasing the reproductive efficiency of buffaloes. Overall design: Organism : Bos taurus, Agilent Bovine Gene Expression 8x60k Array (AMADID: 029411) designed by Genotypic Technology Private Limited
Project description:Transplacental immune programming refers to the concept that during pregnancy, significant crosstalk occurs between the maternal and fetal immune system, with consequent long‐term effects especially for the offspring. In this study, we searched for evidence of transplacental programming in cellular immunity. We made the surprising observation that there is a stringent and specific correlation of regulatory T cells (Treg) between the mother and the fetus. Gene microarray analysis indicates that interleukin 10 (IL‐10) might be involved in transplacental Treg alignment. This is further supported by the direct correlation of IL‐10 at a protein level between maternal fetal dyads. In vitro data provide evidence that IL‐10 may regulate the homeostatic balance between Tregs and non‐Tregs through selective upregulation of the anti‐apoptotic molecule Bcl‐2 in Tregs. Induction of IL‐10 might be triggered by fetus‐derived estriol (E3), which readily crosses the placenta and correlates with maternal IL‐ 10 levels. Our study represents the first example of transplacental regulation of cellular immunity between the mother and the fetus. These novel findings might have major implications for pregnancy related‐changes in the maternal and fetal immune system, and provide possible mechanistic insights into how prenatal influences can lead to subsequent immunopathologies, such as allergy and autoimmunity. T-reg and non-Treg samples of non pregnant women, and matched cord blood and maternal blood T-regs and non-T-regs
Project description:Both the fetus and the mother who are involved in maternal anti-fetal rejection during pregnancy show distinct alterations in the peripheral blood transcriptome Total RNA isolated from umbilical cord blood and maternal blood was compared between cases without (Normal) and with maternal anti-fetal rejection (FIRS2) using whole genome DASL assay.
Project description:Both the fetus and the mother who are involved in maternal anti-fetal rejection during pregnancy show distinct alterations in the peripheral blood transcriptome Overall design: Total RNA isolated from umbilical cord blood and maternal blood was compared between cases without (Normal) and with maternal anti-fetal rejection (FIRS2) using whole genome DASL assay.
Project description:During pregnancy, cells from each fetus travel into the maternal circulation and organs, resulting in the development of microchimerism. Identification of the cell types in this microchimeric population would permit better understanding of possible mechanisms by which they affect maternal health. However, comprehensive analysis of fetal cells has been hampered by their rarity. In this study, we sought to overcome this obstacle by combining flow cytometry with multidimensional gene expression microarray analysis of fetal cells isolated from the murine maternal lung during late pregnancy. Fetal cells were collected from the lungs of pregnant female mice. cDNA was amplified and hybridized to gene expression microarrays. The resulting fetal cell core transcriptome was interrogated using multiple methods including Ingenuity Pathway Analysis, the BioGPS gene expression database, principal component analysis, the Eurexpress gene expression atlas and primary literature. Here we report that small numbers of fetal cells can be flow sorted from the maternal lung, facilitating discovery-driven gene expression analysis. We additionally show that gene expression data can provide functional information about the fetal cells. Our results suggest that fetal cells in the murine maternal lung are a mixed population, consisting of trophoblasts, mesenchymal stem cells and cells of the immune system. The detection of trophoblasts and immune cells in the maternal lung may facilitate future mechanistic studies related to the development of immune tolerance and pregnancy-related complications, such as preeclampsia. Furthermore, the presence and persistence of mesenchymal stem cells in maternal organs may have implications for long-term postpartum maternal health. Comprehensive gene expression microarray analysis of fetal cells isolated from the pregnant murine maternal lung. Seven individual replicates were performed.
Project description:Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV) infection of 3rd trimester pregnant pigs can result in transmission of the virus to the fetus and ultimately death in utero or postnatally. Little is known about the immune response to infection at the maternal-fetal interface and in the fetus itself, or the molecular events behind virus transmission and disease progression in the fetus. To investigate these processes, RNA-sequencing of two tissues, uterine endothelium adjacent to the umbilical attachment site and fetal thymus, was performed 21 days post challenge on four groups of fetuses selected from a large PRRSV challenge experiment of pregnant gilts. RNA-seq experiment compared gene expression between four different groups of fetuses (n=12 per group): control (CON-uninfected fetuses from mock inoculated gilts), UNINF (uninfected fetuses from PRRSV-inoculated gilts), INF (infected fetuses from PRRSV-inoculated gilts), and meconium-stained fetuses (MEC-meconium-stained fetuses from PRRSV-inoculated gilts) and investigated two tissues: uterine endometrium (with adherent placental tissue) at the site of umbilical attachment and fetal thymus (96 samples in total). Three contrasts were performed for the differential expression (edgeR) and network (WGCNA) analyses: UNINF v CON, INF v UNINF, and MEC v INF.
Project description:Growing evidence supports the hypothesis that the in utero environment can have profound implications for fetal development and for offspring health in later life. Current theory suggests that conditions experienced in utero prepare, or ‘programme’, the fetus for its anticipated post-natal environment. The mechanisms responsible for these programming events are poorly understood but are likely to involve gene expression changes. Folate is essential for normal fetal development and inadequate maternal folate supply during pregnancy has long term adverse effects on the offspring. We tested the hypothesis that inadequate folate supply during pregnancy alters offspring programming through altered gene expression. Female C57BL/6J mice were fed diets containing 2 mg folic acid/kg or 0.4 mg folic acid/kg for 4 weeks before mating and throughout pregnancy. At 17.5 day gestation, genome-wide gene expression in fetal liver and placenta of male offspring was measured by microarray analysis. In the fetal liver, 989 genes (555 up-regulated, 434 down-regulated) were expressed differentially in response to maternal folate depletion, with 460 genes expressed differentially (250 up-regulated, 255 down-regulated) in the placenta. Only 25 differentially expressed genes were common between organs, revealing that maternal folate intake during pregnancy influences fetal gene expression in a highly organ specific manner which, we propose, reflects prioritised protection of essential organ-specific functions.
Project description:Background: the human placenta facilitates the exchange of nutrients, gas and waste between the fetal and maternal circulations. It also protects the fetus from the maternal immune response. Due to its role at the feto-maternal interface, the placenta is subject to many environmental exposures that can potentially alter its epigenetic profile. Previous studies have reported gene expression differences in placenta over gestation, as well as inter-individual variation in expression of some genes. However, the factors contributing to this variation in gene expression remain poorly understood. Results: in this study, we performed a genome-wide DNA methylation analysis of gene promoters in placenta tissue from three pregnancy trimesters. We identified large-scale differences in global DNA methylation levels between first, second and third trimesters, with an overall progressive increase in average methylation from first to third trimester. The most differentially methylated genes included many immune regulators, reflecting the change in placental immuno-modulation as pregnancy progresses. We also detected increased inter-individual variation in the third trimester relative to first and second, supporting an accumulation of environmentally induced (or stochastic) changes in DNA methylation pattern. These highly variable genes were enriched for those involved in amino acid and other metabolic pathways, potentially reflecting the adaptation of the human placenta to different environments. Conclusions : the identification of cellular pathways subject to drift in response to environmental influences provide a basis for future studies examining the role of specific environmental factors on DNA methylation pattern and placenta-associated adverse pregnancy outcomes. A total of 42 samples, with 18 first trimester, 10 second trimester, 14 full term placenta
Project description:Microarray of whole blood maternal samples comparing the expression of genes in the maternal blood in pregnancies where the fetus was hypoxic at birth compared to those where the fetus was normoxic at birth. Intrapartum hypoxia is associated with severe neonatal morbidity and mortality. Current techniques to assess fetal hypoxic status during labour have a poor sensitivity. At birth, the lactate level in umbilical cord blood is used to assess the degree of fetal hypoxia during birth, such that a high lactate reflects a hypoxic fetus and a low lactate a normoxic fetus. We collected maternal blood prior to delivery and compared the expression of genes in the maternal blood in women delivering a normoxic or hypoxic fetus as evidenced by umbilcal cord blood levels.
Project description:Low and high birth weight are not only major causes of neonatal morbidity and mortality, but epidemiological data have established an association between birth weight and later life risk of adult metabolic diseases. Fetal growth is determined by complex interactions between fetal genes and the maternal uterine environment. Subtle or overt variation in maternal glucose tolerance, which is, in part, genetically determined, is related to fetal size at birth. Moreover, new emerging data suggest that genetic variation in the fetus can impact maternal metabolism (e.g., blood pressure and glucose tolerance). Given the above, we are addressing the hypothesis that, during pregnancy, gene-environment interactions in the context of the maternal-fetal unit impact fetal size at birth and maternal metabolism. Genes that control fetal growth or maternal metabolism during pregnancy are largely unknown, so the first step to address our hypothesis will be to identify genetic... (for more see dbGaP study page.)
Project description:Objective: Amniotic fluid (AF) is a proximal fluid to the fetus containing higher amounts of cell-free fetal RNA/DNA than maternal serum, thereby making it a promising source for novel biomarker discovery of fetal development and maturation. Our aim was to compare AF transcriptomic profiles at different time points in pregnancy to demonstrate unique genetic signatures that would serve as potential biomarkers indicative of fetal maturation. Methods: We isolated AF RNA from 16 women at different time points in pregnancy: 4 from 18-24 weeks, 6 from 34-36 weeks, and 6 from at 39-40 weeks. RNA-sequencing was performed on cell-free RNA. Gene expression and splicing analyses were performed in conjunction with cell-type and pathway inference. Results: Sample-level analysis at different time points in pregnancy yielded a strong correlation with cell types found in the intrauterine environment and fetal respiratory, digestive and external barrier tissues of the fetus, using high-confidence cellular molecular markers. While some genes and splice variants were present throughout pregnancy, an abundant number of transcripts were uniquely expressed at different time points in pregnancy and associated with distinct fetal co-morbidities (respiratory distress and gavage feeding), indicating fetal immaturity. Conclusions: The AF transcriptome exhibits unique cell- and organ-selective expression patterns at different time points in pregnancy that can potentially identify fetal organ maturity and predict neonatal morbidity. Developing novel biomarkers indicative of the maturation of multiple organ systems can improve upon our current methods of fetal maturity testing which focus solely on the lung, and better inform obstetrical decisions regarding delivery timing. Overall design: RNA-Seq from cell-free was used to idenitfy mRNA transcripts indicative of overall fetal maturity.