Expression of adrenomedullin, a hypotensive peptide, in the trophoblast giant cells at the embryo implantation site in mouse

Shinichi Yotsumoto, Tokihiko Shimada, Chang Yi Cui, Hiroshi Nakashima, Hiroyuki Fujiwara, Minoru S.H. Ko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Adrenomedullin (AM) is a newly discovered hypotensive peptide which is believed to play an important role for blood pressure control in the adult. Although it has been well established that a major production site of AM is vascular endothelial cells, we now show that AM is most highly expressed in trophoblast giant cells, which are derived from the conceptus and are directly in contact with maternal tissues at the implantation site. Northern blot and in situ hybridization analyses show that the AM mRNA begins to be detected just after implantation and its level peaks at 9.5 days postconception (d.p.c.) in those cells. Expression then falls dramatically after 10.5 d.p.c., coincident with the completion of the mature chorioallantoic placenta. Immunohistochemical analyses show that the AM peptide is secreted from the trophoblast giant cells into the surrounding tissues, i.e., embryo, decidua, and maternal circulation. In contrast, the expression of an AM receptor was not detected by Northern blot analyses in either embryo or trophoblast giant cells at 7 d.p.c., when the AM gene is most highly expressed in the trophoblast giant cells. This suggests that the AM produced and secreted from the embryo's trophoblast giant cells acts on the maternal tissues rather than on the embryonic tissues. Based on these results, we propose that the high production of AM may be the mechanism by which the embryos survive at the early postimplantation period by pooling maternal blood in the implantation site in order to secure nutrition and oxygen before the establishment of efficient embryo-maternal circulation through the mature placenta.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-275
Number of pages12
JournalDevelopmental Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Nov 15
Externally publishedYes


  • Adrenomedullin
  • Gene expression
  • Implantation
  • Mouse
  • Trophoblast giant cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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