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The mechanisms involved in the initiation of human labor are largely unknown. Understanding the molecular pathways is fundamental in both the development of effective therapeutic strategies and intervention to prevent preterm labor. Prostaglandins are bioactive lipids and members of the eicosanoids family, derived from arachidonic acid, which act in a(More)
The control of myometrial contractility during pregnancy and parturition is not fully understood. Gas signalling molecules, such as nitric oxide and carbon monoxide, have been shown to relax the myometrium and may be involved in the control of contractility. Hydrogen sulphide has recently been shown to be produced endogenously in animal and human tissue and(More)
BACKGROUND Hydrogen sulphide is a gas signalling molecule which is produced endogenously from L-cysteine via the enzymes cystathionine beta-synthase (CBS) and cystathionine gamma-lyase (CSE). The possible role of hydrogen sulphide in reproduction has not yet been fully investigated. It has been previously demonstrated that hydrogen sulphide relaxes uterine(More)
This study investigated the mechanisms of the stimulatory effect of hyaluronic acid on motility in human sperm in vitro. A method, involving the measurement of forward progression through an agarose gel. was used to measure sperm motility quantitatively. Changes in intracellular Ca2+ concentrations in sperm were detected using the fluorescent dye Fluo-3.(More)
Interleukin-8 (IL-8) is produced by human decidual cells in culture, and may play a role in the initiation of parturition. beta-endorphin is released in significant amounts into the maternal and fetal circulation during labour. The effect of beta-endorphin on IL-8 production by human chorio-decidual cells in culture was investigated. Mixed cells were(More)
Normal human bone marrow stroma cells include stem cells for both haemopoietic and osteochondrogenic lineages and express both bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) type I and type II receptors. As a member of the TGF-beta super-family, BMP-6 binds to both BMP type I and type II receptors and is involved in the developmental processes of renal and hepatic(More)
The immune system plays an important role in immunity (immune surveillance), but also in the regulation of tissue homeostasis (immune physiology). Lessons from the female reproductive tract indicate that immune system related cells, such as intraepithelial T cells and monocyte-derived cells (MDC) in stratified epithelium, interact amongst themselves and(More)
Preterm birth is a major public health problem, affecting up to 10% of pregnancies. The cause of premature labour in humans is not known, although some risk factors have been identified. Currently it is not possible to predict which women will go into labour prematurely or deliver preterm. New possible methods for the detection of premature labour are the(More)
OBJECTIVE To determine whether CD44 is expressed by human sperm cells. DESIGN Prospective study. SETTING Assisted conception unit and university research laboratory. PATIENT(S) Fourteen normal fertile donors. INTERVENTION(S) None. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S) Enzyme-linked immunoassay was used to measure the concentration of CD44 in samples of human(More)
OBJECTIVES Hydrogen sulphide has been identified as a gas signalling molecule in the body, and has previously been shown to have vasorelaxant properties. The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of sodium hydrosulphide (NaHS), a hydrogen sulphide donor, on heart rate (HR), left ventricular developed pressure (LVDP) and coronary flow (CF) in the(More)