Depot-medroxyprogesterone acetate reduces genital cell-cell adhesion molecule expression and increases genital herpes simplex virus type 2 infection susceptibility in a dose-dependent fashion.Contraception. 2019 11; 100(5):397-401.C
Analyzing ectocervical biopsy tissue from women before and after they initiated use of depot-medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), we previously reported this progestin reduces levels of the cell-cell adhesion molecule (CCAM) desmoglein-1 and increases genital mucosal permeability. We likewise saw treating mice with 1.0 mg of DMPA reduced vaginal CCAM expression and increased genital pathogen susceptibility. Herein, we used dose-response studies to delimit DMPA doses and serum MPA levels in mice associated with impaired genital mucosal barrier function and enhanced susceptibility to low-dose herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infection.
We compared genital CCAM expression, genital mucosal permeability, and susceptibility to genital inoculation with 103 plaque-forming units of HSV-2 among mice in estrus vs. after treatment with 0.01 mg, 0.1 mg, 0.3 mg, or 1.0 mg of DMPA.
Compared to mice in estrus, DMPA treatment in a dose-dependent fashion significantly reduced desmoglein 1α (Dsg1a) and desmocollin-1 (Dsc1) gene expression, reduced DSG1 protein levels, and increased genital mucosal permeability to a low molecular weight molecule. While no mice infected with HSV-2 in estrus died, we respectively saw 50% and 100% mortality in mice administered 0.1 mg or 0.3 mg of DMPA. At time of infection, mean serum MPA levels in mice administered the 0.1 mg or 0.3 mg doses were 3.8 nM and 13.0 nM respectively (values comparable to trough and peak MPA serum levels in women using DMPA).
Mice with pharmacologically relevant serum MPA concentrations display significant changes in genital CCAM expression, genital mucosal barrier function, and HSV-2 susceptibility.