Recent studies have reported that E2F transcription factor (E2F) 8, an atypical E2F transcription factor, serves a critical role in promoting the growth and development of the murine placenta. However, the function of E2F8 in the human placenta remains unknown. Invasion of extravillous trophoblasts (EVTs) into the maternal decidua is known to be important for the development of the human placenta. To investigate the role of E2F8 in human placental development, E2F8 localisation was examined in the human placenta and E2F8 mRNA expression was detected in primary cultured EVTs. The human EVT cell line, HTR-8/SVneo, was divided into two groups and treated separately, one with retrovirus expressing short hairpin (sh)-RNA against E2F8 (shE2F8 cells) and the other with non-target control shRNA (shControl cells). The cell functions, including cell cycle, proliferation, invasion and adhesion, were compared between the shE2F8 and shControl cells. A histological examination revealed that E2F8 was localised in the decidua cells, EVTs, and cytotrophoblasts in the placenta. E2F8 mRNA was confirmed to be expressed in cultured primary EVTs. No significant difference was observed in the cell cycle, proliferation or adhesion between the shE2F8 and shControl cells. The invasive ability was ~2-fold higher in the shE2F8 cells when compared with the shControl cells (P<0.01). Production of matrix metalloproteinase-1 was significantly increased in the shE2F8 cells when compared with the shControl cells (P<0.05). Taken together, E2F8 is present in the EVTs of the human placenta, but, unlike murine placenta, it may suppress the invasiveness of EVTs. E2F8 was also present in cytotrophoblasts in cell columns, which have no invasive ability and differentiate into EVTs. In conclusion, E2F8 also exists in the human placenta, and its function may be different from that in the murine placenta, although further investigation is required.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Cancer Research