Human trophoblast stem cell self-renewal and differentiation: Role of decorin
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The origin and regulation of stem cells sustaining trophoblast renewal in the human placenta remain unclear. Decorin, a leucine-rich proteoglycan restrains trophoblast proliferation, migration/invasiveness and endovascular differentiation, and local decorin overproduction is associated with preeclampsia (PE). Here, we tested the role of decorin in human trophoblast stem cell self-renewal and differentiation, using two models: an immortalized first trimester trophoblast cell line HTR-8/SVneo (HTR) and freshly isolated primary trophoblast (p-trophoblast) from early first trimester (6-9 weeks) placentas. Self-renewal capacity was measured by spheroid forming ability of single cells on ultra-low attachment plates for multiple generations. Markers of embryonic stem (ES) cells, trophoblast stem (TS) cells and trophoblast were used to identify stem cell hierarchy. Differentiation markers for syncytial and extravillous (EVT) pathways were employed to identify differentiated cells. Bewo cells were additionally used to explore DCN effects on syncytialization. Results reveal that the incidence of spheroid forming stem-like cells was 13-15% in HTR and 0.1-0.4%, in early first trimester p-trophoblast, including a stem cell hierarchy of two populations of ES and TS-like cells. DCN restrained ES cell self-renewal, promoted ES to TS transition and maintenance of TS cell stem-ness, but inhibited TS cell differentiation into both syncytial and EVT pathways.
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