Trophoblast pseudo-vasculogenesis: faking it with endothelial adhesion receptors

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 1998 Oct;10(5):660-6. doi: 10.1016/s0955-0674(98)80043-4.


During early development, a subset of fetal (placental) cytotrophoblasts exhibits tumor-like behavior and invades the uterus. To access a supply of maternal blood, they invade arterioles and form heterotypic interactions with, and replace, resident maternal endothelium, creating a hybrid uterine vasculature. Recently, it has become clear that invading cytotrophoblasts transform their adhesion receptor phenotype to resemble the endothelial cells they replace. Furthermore, they express vasculogenic factors and receptors. Is this a form of vasculogenesis?

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / biosynthesis*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Endothelium, Vascular / cytology*
  • Epithelial Cells / cytology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic*
  • Pregnancy
  • Trophoblasts / physiology*
  • Uterus / blood supply*


  • Cell Adhesion Molecules