Morphological interactions of human first trimester placental villi co-cultured with decidual explants

M. O. Babawale, S. Van Noorden, M. Pignatelli, G. W.H. Stamp, M. G. Elder, M. H.F. Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Abnormalities of pregnancy such as pre-eclampsia and intrauterine growth retardation are characterized by shallow trophoblastic invasion of the placental bed, the precise molecular pathophysiology of which remains to be fully elucidated. An in-vitro model involving a co-culture of first trimester placental villi and decidua parietalis explants (of 8-12 weeks gestation) was developed and used to characterize the migration and local invasion of trophoblast cells. Trophoblast proliferation (confirmed by Ki-67 immunostaining), differentiation and loose attachment of placental villi to the underlying decidual epithelium or stroma occurred, within the first 24 h of co-culture. This was followed by erosion of the syncytial layer of the placental villi and commencement of a progressive cytotrophoblast invasion after 48 h of co-culture, which continued until 120 h, when the experiments were terminated. E-cadherin was expressed at the interfaces between trophoblast cells within the villi, but expression of this adhesion molecule seemed to be down-regulated in the invasive trophoblast cells. Our results suggest that the model could be useful in investigating the factors that control early human placentation and the fete-maternal interface.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)444-450
Number of pages7
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1996


  • Decidua
  • E-cadherin
  • Ki-67
  • Placentation
  • Trophoblast

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Morphological interactions of human first trimester placental villi co-cultured with decidual explants'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this