Trophoblast interaction with fibrin matrix: Epithelialization of perivillous fibrin deposits as a mechanism for villous repair in the human placenta

D. M. Nelson, E. C. Crouch, E. M. Curran, D. R. Farmer

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Abstract

The authors have used morphometric, immunocytochemical, and electron optical techniques to study fibrin deposits associated with villi from 14 normal term placentas, and have examined the response of cultured cellular trophoblast to fibrin matrix in vitro. Morphometric analysis of 3477 villous profiles showed that 5.5% of villi examined had fibrin deposition at sites of syncytial denudation and that fibrin deposition was highly associated with villous epithelial denudation, as evidenced by loss of cytokeratin staining. The perivillous fibrin deposits were strongly immunoreactive for the B β chain of fibrin II, consistent with local thrombolytic cleavage of fibrinogen to fibrin. Deposits were frequently surfaced by a discontinuous layer of cytokerative positive trophoblastic cells that showed type IV basement membrane collagen immunoreactivity at the interface between trophoblast and fibrin. Ultrastructurally, damage to the syncytial trophoblast was apparent at the edge of some deposits, where syncytial denudation was accompanied by a fibrin coating of residual cellular trophoblast and the trophoblastic basal lamina. Other deposits were surfaced by syncytial trophoblasts with underlying cellular trophoblast and a new basal lamina external to the basal lamina of the villous core. Cultured cellular trophoblast grown on a fibrin matrix, but not on uncoated plastic, showed morphologic differentiation into a trophoblast layer like that on term villi. The authors suggest that epithelializationn of perivillous fibrin deposits is a form of villous repair and that trophoblast-fibrin interactions can modulate trophoblastic differentiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)855-865
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Volume136
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1990

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