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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2014, Article ID 635364, 11 pages
Research Article

Bisphenol A Alters -hCG and MIF Release by Human Placenta: An In Vitro Study to Understand the Role of Endometrial Cells

1Department of Life Sciences, University of Siena, Via A. Moro 2, 53100 Siena, Italy
2Department of Reproductive Immunology and Pathology, Institute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research, Polish Academy of Sciences, Tuwima 10 Street, 10-747 Olsztyn, Poland
3Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Warmia and Masuria, Zolnierska 14 C Street, 10-561 Olsztyn, Poland

Received 15 November 2013; Revised 6 January 2014; Accepted 30 January 2014; Published 11 March 2014

Academic Editor: Graça Ferreira-Dias

Copyright © 2014 C. Mannelli 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.


A proper fetomaternal immune-endocrine cross-talk in pregnancy is fundamental for reproductive success. This might be unbalanced by exposure to environmental chemicals, such as bisphenol A (BPA). As fetoplacental contamination with BPA originates from the maternal compartment, this study investigated the role of the endometrium in BPA effects on the placenta. To this end, in vitro decidualized stromal cells were exposed to BPA 1 nM, and their conditioned medium (diluted 1 : 2) was used on chorionic villous explants from human placenta. Parallel cultures of placental explants were directly exposed to 0.5 nM BPA while, control cultures were exposed to the vehicle (EtOH 0.1%). After 24–48 h, culture medium from BPA-treated and control cultures was assayed for concentration of hormone human Chorionic Gonadotropin (β-hCG) and cytokine Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor (MIF). The results showed that direct exposure to BPA stimulated the release of both MIF and β-hCG. These effects were abolished/diminished in placental cultures exposed to endometrial cell-conditioned medium. GM-MS analysis revealed that endometrial cells retain BPA, thus reducing the availability of this chemical for the placenta. The data obtained highlight the importance of in vitro models including the maternal component in reproducing the effects of environmental chemicals on human fetus/placenta.