Immunohistochemical localization of nitric oxide synthase in the human placenta

Leslie Myatt, D. E. Brockman, A. L W Eis, J. S. Pollock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

176 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have studied the distribution of the endothelial isoform of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) through the term human umbilical cord and placenta by immunohistochemistry. Histochemistry with the NADPH diaphorase substrate nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) has also been used to establish if other isoforms of NOS may be present in these tissues. Positive immunofluorescence for endothelial NOS was found in umbilical cord artery and vein endothelium, although positive staining was only found in approximately 50% of veins. The endothelium of stem villous vessels dissected from beneath the chorionic plate was also intensely immunostained. In the terminal villi punctate immunostaining was found at the basal aspect and around nuclei of syncytiotrophoblast, but was absent from stroma and endothelium of terminal villous vessels. A positive histochemical stain for NBT was found in cord artery and vein endothelium and stem villous vessel endothelium. Intense diffuse staining with NBT was found in syncytiotrophoblast, but no other cell types in the terminal villi stained with NBT. The endothelial NOS isoform appears to be localized in the resistance vasculature of the placenta, but not in the capillary endothelium of terminal villi where there is no underlying smooth muscle. It may contribute to the 'endothelial' function of syncytiotrophoblast if secreted towards the intervillous space or alternatively fulfil other signal transduction roles. The pattern of staining with NBT was similar to that with endothelial NOS and suggests that other isoforms of NOS are not present in the placental unit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-495
Number of pages9
JournalPlacenta
Volume14
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes

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Nitroblue Tetrazolium
Nitric Oxide Synthase
Placenta
Nitric Oxide Synthase Type III
Endothelium
Protein Isoforms
Trophoblasts
Umbilical Cord
Staining and Labeling
Veins
NADPH Dehydrogenase
Umbilical Veins
Umbilical Arteries
Vascular Endothelium
Fluorescent Antibody Technique
Smooth Muscle
Signal Transduction
Coloring Agents
Arteries
Immunohistochemistry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cite this

Immunohistochemical localization of nitric oxide synthase in the human placenta. / Myatt, Leslie; Brockman, D. E.; Eis, A. L W; Pollock, J. S.

In: Placenta, Vol. 14, No. 5, 1993, p. 487-495.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Myatt, Leslie ; Brockman, D. E. ; Eis, A. L W ; Pollock, J. S. / Immunohistochemical localization of nitric oxide synthase in the human placenta. In: Placenta. 1993 ; Vol. 14, No. 5. pp. 487-495.
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