Altered mRNA expression pattern of placental epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in pregnancies complicated by preeclampsia and/or intrauterine growth retardation.Am J Perinatol 1998; 15(1):9-13AJ
Placental pathology in preeclampsia (PE) and intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) is associated with alterations of the placental epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). It is encoded by a single gene, which gives rise to two different full-length transcripts and one putative truncated transcript in the placenta. The aim was to investigate if the placental mRNA expression pattern of EGFR differs between women with PE and/or IUGR and normal pregnancies. Tissue samples from placentas were obtained immediately after delivery. Total nucleic acids were prepared and mRNA levels of EGFR transcripts were measured by a solution hybridization technique. In the group with IUGR the placental mRNA expression of the two full-length transcripts was found to be significantly lower than in placentas from normal pregnancy, whereas the expression of the truncated transcript was higher. The groups with PE or PE with IUGR had a significantly higher mRNA expression of the truncated transcript, while there were no significant differences in the mRNA expression of the two full-length transcripts. These findings are consistent with an important role for EGFR in the regulation of placental and fetal growth.