Lipid storage droplets (LSDs) are subcellular storage depots for triglycerides (TGs) and cholesterol esters surrounded by specific populations of proteins that are necessary for their formation. We have previously described the appearance of LSDs in human fetal membranes with advancing gestation and labor. Perilipin and adipophilin are functional/structural proteins located on the surfaces of intracellular LSDs. Adipophilin and perilipin were both immunolocalized to the amnion epithelium and amnion fibroblasts in human fetal membranes. Adipophilin was also localized to the choriodecidual layer, whereas perilipin was localized to the chorion trophoblasts. Although immunohistochemical data show an apparent increase in adipophilin, but not perilipin, expression in fetal membranes with advancing gestation and labor, Western analysis of tissue homogenate supernatant revealed no significant changes in adipophilin and perilipin expression. However, Western analysis of the floating lipid-rich layer from the tissue homogenate revealed an abundance of adipophilin and perilipin as well as other enzymes (cytosolic phospholipase A2, prostaglandin endoperoxide, and microsomal-associated prostaglandin E synthase-1) involved in prostaglandin synthesis. The association of these enzymatically active proteins with LSDs suggests that LSDs may be foci for signaling via the arachidonic acid cascade in fetal membranes. The structural and functional roles of adipophilin and perilipin in gestation and labor remain to be determined.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical