Comparative study on the biological characteristics of menstrual blood- and endometrium-derived endometrial cells

Exp Ther Med. 2021 Dec;22(6):1421. doi: 10.3892/etm.2021.10856. Epub 2021 Oct 11.


During a woman's reproductive period, the endometrial tissue is shed and regenerated every month to prepare for pregnancy or for the next cycle. The aim of the present study was to isolate, culture and characterize human endometrial cells (ECs) derived from menstrual blood (MB) and the endometrium (E). MB-derived ECs (MB-ECs) were isolated from women's MB. E-derived ECs (E-ECs) were isolated from women's endometrial tissues. The present study investigated the epithelial cell marker cytokeratin 18 (CK18) in MB-ECs and E-ECs. Cell proliferation analyses indicated that E-ECs (population doubling time, 20.85 h) grew faster than MB-ECs (population doubling time, 22.05 h; P<0.05). Cell migration ability was found to be significantly greater for MB-ECs than for E-ECs at 48 h (P<0.01). MB-ECs incubated with TGF-β1 (3 ng/ml) exhibited significantly decreased CK18 mRNA expression (P<0.01), and significantly increased vimentin (Vim) mRNA (P<0.05) and protein (P<0.01) expression at 6 and 12 h, respectively. E-EC incubation with TGF-β1 (3 ng/ml) significantly decreased CK18 mRNA expression (P<0.01) at 12 h and significantly increased Vim mRNA (P<0.01) and protein expression (P<0.05) at 6 h. The present results indicated that MB-ECs and E-ECs were biologically different, and that epithelial-mesenchymal transdifferentiation could be induced by TGF-β1 treatment.

Keywords: TGF-β1-induced transdifferentiation; biological characteristics; comparative study; endometrium-derived endometrial cells; menstrual blood-derived endometrial cells.

Grants and funding

Funding: The present study was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of The Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region funded projects (grant no. 2016D01C280).