Int J Biol Sci 2020; 16(12):2220-2234. doi:10.7150/ijbs.45586

Review

Collagen at the maternal-fetal interface in human pregnancy

Jia-Wei Shi1,2, Zhen-Zhen Lai2, Hui-Li Yang2, Shao-Liang Yang2, Cheng-Jie Wang2, Deng Ao2, Lu-Yu Ruan2, Hui-Hui Shen2, Wen-Jie Zhou3, Jie Mei4, Qiang Fu5, Ming-Qing Li1,2✉

1. NHC Key Lab of Reproduction Regulation (Shanghai Institute of Planned Parenthood Research), Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Fudan University, Shanghai 200080, People's Republic of China.
2. Shanghai Key Laboratory of Female Reproductive Endocrine Related Diseases, Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Fudan University, Shanghai 200080, People's Republic of China.
3. Center of Reproductive Medicine of Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200025, People's Republic of China.
4. Reproductive Medicine Center, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Nanjing Drum Tower Hospital, The Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing University Medical School, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210008, People's Republic of China.
5. Department of Immunology, Binzhou Medical College, Yantai, 264003, People's Republic of China.

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Citation:
Shi JW, Lai ZZ, Yang HL, Yang SL, Wang CJ, Ao D, Ruan LY, Shen HH, Zhou WJ, Mei J, Fu Q, Li MQ. Collagen at the maternal-fetal interface in human pregnancy. Int J Biol Sci 2020; 16(12):2220-2234. doi:10.7150/ijbs.45586. Available from http://www.ijbs.com/v16p2220.htm

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Abstract

The survival and development of a semi-allogenic fetus during pregnancy require special immune tolerance microenvironment at the maternal fetal interface. During the establishment of a successful pregnancy, the endometrium undergoes a series of changes, and the extracellular matrix (ECM) breaks down and remodels. Collagen is one of the most abundant ECM. Emerging evidence has shown that collagen and its fragment are expressed at the maternal fetal interface. The regulation of expression of collagen is quite complex, and this process involves a multitude of factors. Collagen exerts a critical role during the successful pregnancy. In addition, the abnormal expressions of collagen and its fragments are associated with certain pathological states associated with pregnancy, including recurrent miscarriage, diabetes mellitus with pregnancy, preeclampsia and so on. In this review, the expression and potential roles of collagen under conditions of physiological and pathological pregnancy are systematically discussed.

Keywords: collagen, NC1 domain, decidua, miscarriage, preeclampsia, diabetes, NK cell, cervix