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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 2012, Article ID 484321, 7 pages
Research Article

MBL Interferes with Endovascular Trophoblast Invasion in Pre-Eclampsia

1Institute for Maternal and Child Health, IRCCS “Burlo Garofolo”, 34137 Trieste, Italy
2Department of Life Sciences, University of Trieste, Via Valerio 28, 34127 Trieste, Italy

Received 4 July 2011; Accepted 7 September 2011

Academic Editor: Gilbert Faure

Copyright © 2012 Chiara Agostinis et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The spiral arteries undergo physiologic changes during pregnancy, and the failure of this process may lead to a spectrum of pregnancy disorders, including pre-eclampsia. Our recent data indicate that decidual endothelial cells (DECs), covering the inner side of the spiral arteries, acquire the ability to synthesize C1q, which acts as a link between endovascular trophoblast and DECs favouring the process of vascular remodelling. In this study, we have shown that sera obtained from pre-eclamptic patients strongly inhibit the interaction between extravillous trophoblast (EVT) and DECs, preventing endovascular invasion of trophoblast cells. We further demonstrated that mannose-binding lectin (MBL), one of the factor increased in pre-eclamptic patient sera, strongly inhibits the interaction of EVT with C1q interfering with the process of EVT adhesion to and migration through DECs. These data suggest that the increased level of MBL in pre-eclampsia may contribute to the failure of the endovascular invasion of trophoblast cells.