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Direct involvement of HERV-W Env glycoprotein in human trophoblast cell fusion and differentiation.: HERV-W Env GLYCOPROTEIN IN TROPHOBLAST DIFFERENTIATION

Abstract : We recently demonstrated that the product of the HERV-W env gene, a retroviral envelope protein also dubbed syncytin, is a highly fusogenic membrane glycoprotein inducing the formation of syncytia on interaction with the type D mammalian retrovirus receptor. In addition, the detection of HERV-W Env protein (Env-W) expression in placental tissue sections led us to propose a role for this fusogenic glycoprotein in placenta formation. To evaluate this hypothesis, we analyzed the involvement of Env-W in the differentiation of primary cultures of human villous cytotrophoblasts that spontaneously differentiate by cell fusion into syncytiotrophoblasts in vitro. First, we observed that HERV-W env mRNA and glycoprotein expression are colinear with primary cytotrophoblast differentiation and with expression of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a marker of syncytiotrophoblast formation. Second, we observed that in vitro stimulation of trophoblast cell fusion and differentiation by cyclic AMP is also associated with a concomitant increase in HERV-W env and hCG mRNA and protein expression. Finally, by using specific antisense oligonucleotides, we demonstrated that inhibition of Env-W protein expression leads to a decrease of trophoblast fusion and differentiation, with the secretion of hCG in culture medium of antisense oligonucleotide-treated cells being decreased by fivefold. Taken together, these results strongly support a direct role for Env-W in human trophoblast cell fusion and differentiation.
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https://www.hal.inserm.fr/inserm-00128429
Contributor : Jean-Louis Frendo <>
Submitted on : Thursday, February 1, 2007 - 11:16:40 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - 3:59:02 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, November 25, 2016 - 2:42:29 PM

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Jean-Louis Frendo, Delphine Olivier, Valérie Cheynet, Jean-Luc Blond, Olivier Bouton, et al.. Direct involvement of HERV-W Env glycoprotein in human trophoblast cell fusion and differentiation.: HERV-W Env GLYCOPROTEIN IN TROPHOBLAST DIFFERENTIATION. Molecular and Cellular Biology, American Society for Microbiology, 2003, 23 (10), pp.3566-74. ⟨10.1128/MCB.23.10.3566–3574.2003⟩. ⟨inserm-00128429⟩

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