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PPAR Research
Volume 2013, Article ID 575604, 10 pages
Research Article

The Liver X Receptor in Correlation with Other Nuclear Receptors in Spontaneous and Recurrent Abortions

1Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Campus Innenstadt, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, 80337 Munich, Germany
2Department of Pediatrics, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Ctr Liver Digest & Metab Dis, 9700 AB Groningen, The Netherlands
3Research Center, Dr. von Hauner Children’s Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, 80337 Munich, Germany

Received 30 November 2012; Revised 7 February 2013; Accepted 14 March 2013

Academic Editor: Thierry Fournier

Copyright © 2013 Julia Knabl 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 liver X receptors (LXRs) have been shown to be crucially involved in maternal-fetal cholesterol transport and placentation. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression pattern and frequency of LXR under normal physiological circumstances and in spontaneous abortion and/or recurrent miscarriage. A total of 29 (12 physiologic pregnancies/10 spontaneous abortions/7 recurrent miscarriages) human pregnancies in first trimester were analysed for LXR expression. Expression changes were evaluated by immunohistochemistry for receptor and quantitative RT-PCR (TaqMan) was performed to determine the level of LXR mRNA expression. We also stained for RXRα and PPARγ as possible heterodimers of LXR. LXR expression was downregulated in the syncytiotrophoblast of spontaneous abortion placentas compared to normal pregnancy. In recurrent miscarriage there was a trend for a downregulation. Decidua showed an even stronger downregulation in both groups. In the syncytiotrophoblast we found a positive correlation for the combination of LXR/PPARγ in abortions and a negative correlation for LXR/RXRα. In addition, double-immunofluorescence staining showed that LXR as well as RXRα and PPARγ are expressed by the extravillous trophoblast. Finally, RXRα and LXR showed coexpression in the same extravillous trophoblast cells. To conclude, our data show that LXR expression is decreased in miscarriage.