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. 2018 Jul;13:116-120.
doi: 10.1016/j.preghy.2018.05.012. Epub 2018 May 29.

Plasma Levels of TAM Receptors and Ligands in Severe Preeclampsia

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Plasma Levels of TAM Receptors and Ligands in Severe Preeclampsia

Shiqiao Peng et al. Pregnancy Hypertens. .

Abstract

Background: Preeclampsia (PE) is a multifactorial dysfunction characterized by hypertension with characteristics of systematic endothelial activation. It is widely accepted that vascular disorder and deficient trophoblast invasion are involved in PE. Tyro3/Axl/MerTK (TAM) family receptors are tyrosine-kinase receptors and may exert a diverse range of functions such as cell proliferation, migration, and vascular angiogenesis. The role of TAM signaling in severe PE patients remains unclear. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate involvement of the TAM axis in the pathogenesis of PE.

Methods: A total of 36 severe PE patients and 40 age- and gender-matched healthy pregnant women (controls) were enrolled in this study. Plasma levels of soluble TAM receptors (Tyro3, Axl, MerTK) and ligands (Gas6 and ProS) were then measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). We evaluated the association between the expression of these proteins and the clinical features of PE.

Results: Plasma levels of sMerTK and sAxl were significantly higher in severe PE patients than in control women during pregnancy. The plasma concentrations of sMerTK and sAxl in severe PE patients correlated positively with systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and plasma sAxl levels demonstrated a significant correlation to proteinuria. In contrast, reduced levels of Gas6 were inversely associated with urine protein in PE patients.

Conclusions: Elevated expression of the plasma levels of sMerTK and sAxl, as well as the reduction of Gas6 were observed in severe PE patients. Furthermore, these changes were correlated with disease activity. TAM signaling might play a role in the pathogenesis of PE.

Keywords: Apoptosis; Plasma; Severe preeclampsia; TAM receptors.

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