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Mechanisms of embryo-maternal

Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Eckhard Wolf, Genzentrum der LMU-München

Unit 478

Project 4:

Embryo-maternal Immunomodulation during early pregnancy

Susanne E. Ulbrich, Heinrich H.D. Meyer, Ralf Einspanier

How do maternal cells recognize an embryo without rejection due to histoincompatibility? During early pregnancy physiological mechanisms protect the bovine embryo against an immunoreaction of the surrounding maternal cells. The hypothesis is that a number of functional complexes are involved in modulating the immunocompetence of the endometrium in supporting successful implantation.

Based on previous findings the mRNA and protein expression of candidate genes of different functional complexes in the endometrium and in cells of the intrauterine fluid will be systematically analyzed in pregnant and non-pregnant animals of the pre-attachment period. The function of selected local factors will be confirmed using RNAi in vitro. Changes in abundance of genes involved in immunomodulatory pathways will give insights into the support of the endometrium towards the conceptus and will especially enlighten immunomechanisms during early pregnancy.

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