Atrial natriuretic peptide is biologically activated by the atrial natriuretic peptide-converting enzyme, corin, and has an important role in regulating blood pressure. We detected elevated serum corin levels in women with pre-eclampsia. Interestingly, the serum corin levels were also found to be elevated in pregnancies with a related disorder, unexplained fetal growth restriction (FGR) without hypertension, suggesting that this phenomenon is not simply a response to maternal hypertension. CORIN mRNA levels were not elevated in placentas from pre-eclampsia or unexplained FGR cases. Likewise, similar signal intensities were found for corin in placental syncytiotrophoblast cells by immunostaining. In contrast, corin signals were higher in maternal decidua cells from pre-eclampsia and unexplained FGR cases. These data suggest that corin may be upregulated in maternal decidua in response to an etiologic pathway that is common to pre-eclampsia and FGR.
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