such as "Introduction", "Conclusion"..etc
The quality of life of millions of women is negatively affected by
pelvic organ prolapse (POP) — the downward descent of the pelvic organs
that causes symptoms such as urinary incontinence. In women with POP,
the uterosacral ligaments (USLs), the main supportive structures of the
uterus and vagina, are attenuated. Although changes in the content and
quality of the collagen in the connective tissue of USLs have been
associated with POP, no molecular mechanism(s) underlying this disorder
has been described. However, Kathleen Connell colleagues, at Yale
University School of Medicine, New Haven, have now shown in mice that
the protein encoded by the homeobox gene Hoxa11 is an essential
molecular factor for the development of USLs, leading them to suggest
that changes in HOXA11-regulated pathways might weaken the connective
tissue of USLs and thereby cause POP.
In the study, mice
lacking Hoxa11 were found to have no USLs and expression of HOXA11 was
found to be markedly decreased in the USLs of women with POP. The USLs
of women with POP also expressed decreased levels of the collagen type
I and collagen type III genes as well as increased levels of the MMP2
gene that enables cells to generate a mediator of connective tissue
degradation. Further in vitro analysis indicated that the mouse Hoxa11
gene increased expression of the collagen type III gene and decreased
expression of the Mmp2 gene, thereby defining a molecular mechanism
regulating the mechanical strength of USLs.
Source: Journal of Clinical Investigation. February 2008.
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