The relationship between microvessel density, proliferative activity and expression of vascular endothelial growth factor-A and its receptors in eutopic endometrium and endometriotic lesions.Reproduction. 2006 Sep; 132(3):501-9.R
Studies were performed to elucidate the possible relationship between microvessel density, proliferative activity and angiogenesis in eutopic endometrium from women with and without endometriosis and peritoneal endometriotic lesions. The question whether changes in these parameters in endometriotic lesions were reflected by the level of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A) in serum and peritoneal fluid was also studied. Biopsy specimens of both eutopic endometrium and peritoneal endometriotic lesions from women with endometriosis (n = 25) as well as eutopic endometrium from women without endometriosis (n = 14) were analysed immunohistochemically regarding microvessel density, proliferative activity, and expression of VEGF-A and its receptors vascular endothelial growth factor receptors 1 and 2 (VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2) in stroma, glands and blood vessels. The VEGF-A concentration was measured in peritoneal fluid and serum. Secretory phase eutopic endometrium from women with endometriosis had significantly higher microvessel density, expression of VEGF-A in glandular epithelium and VEGFR-2 in endometrial blood vessels than those from women without endometriosis. Endometriotic lesions with high proliferative activity had a higher microvessel density and showed higher vascular expression of VEGFR-2 as well as being accompanied by higher levels of VEGF-A in peritoneal fluid and serum, compared with lesions with low proliferative activity. In conclusion, there seems to be a dysregulation of angiogenic activity in the eutopic endometrium of women with endometriosis and endometriotic lesions with high proliferative activity were accompanied by higher local angiogenic activity and higher levels of VEGF in serum and peritoneal fluid.