Presence and localization of connexins 43 and 26 in cell cultures derived from myometrial tissues from nonpregnant and pregnant women and from leiomyomas
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OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to study the appearance and distribution of connexins 43 and 26 in various human myometrial cell cultures. STUDY DESIGN: Scrape loading Western blotting and immunohistochemical techniques were applied to cultured cells derived from myometrial tissues obtained from nonpregnant and pregnant women (upper and tower uterine segments) and from leiomyomas (tumor and analogous myometrial tissues). RESULTS: Scrape loading revealed the presence or metabolic coupling in all tissues. indirect immunohistochemical studies showed membrane localization of connexin 43 in all myometrial cultures. Western blots and indirect immunohistochemical studies showed the presence and localization of the connexin 26 protein and associated gap junctions in tissues from myomas and from nonpregnant and pregnant women except for those derived from the upper segment of the pregnant uterus. CONCLUSION: These results show that human myometrial cultures express various gap junction proteins and that there are regional differences in expression of connexins in tissues from pregnant women.