Enzyme histochemically detectable NAD(P)H oxidase in human placental trophoblasts: normal, preeclamptic, and fetal growth restriction-complicated pregnancy

Matsubara, Shigeki; Sato, Ikuo
July 2001
Histochemistry & Cell Biology;Jul2001, Vol. 116 Issue 1, p1
Academic Journal
The purpose of the present study was to determine the subcellular localization of NAD(P)H oxidase, a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-producing enzyme, in the human placenta at various gestational ages. Ultrastructural enzyme histochemistry for NAD(P)H oxidase, using cerium as a capturing agent, was carried out. Placentas from patients with severe preeclampsia and patients who delivered infants with fetal growth restriction (FGR) were also studied. Electron-dense precipitates indicating NAD(P)H oxidase activity were visible in the microvillous membranes of the placentas, especially on the surface plasma membrane of the syncytiotrophoblast microvilli, after 25 weeks of gestation. The distribution pattern and enzyme intensities were apparently the same among normal, preeclamptic, and FGR placentas. Cytochemical control experiments ensured the specific detection of NAD(P)H oxidase activity. These observations indicated that syncytiotrophoblasts possessed NAD(P)H oxidase activity, and thus ROS-generating activity. Placental NAD(P)H oxidase may play a role in placental lipid peroxidation and the placental defense mechanism.


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