Reviews of Reproduction

Reviews of Reproduction (2000) 5 63-66
© 2000 Society for Reproduction and Fertility
DOI: 10.1530/ror.0.0050063
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Monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 in luteolysis

LA Penny

Monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1) is a member of the chemokine family of cytokines which are involved in leukocyte physiology and trafficking. Interest in the role of inflammatory cells and their cytokine products in luteolysis has been increasing and there is mounting evidence demonstrating that MCP-1 is involved in luteolysis. Cell sources of MCP-1, such as endothelial cells, are abundant in late stage luteal tissue. Increased amounts of mRNA encoding MCP-1 are found after luteolysis in sheep, pigs, cows, rats and women and its up-regulation is associated with an increase in macrophages within the corpus luteum, indicating that MCP-1 may act as an inflammatory mediator during luteal regression. Luteolytic substances (prolactin in rats and prostaglandin F2alpha in ruminants) appear to be involved in increased expression of MCP-1 within the corpus luteum, although it is unclear whether this is a direct or indirect effect. Cytokines produced within the corpus luteum around luteolysis may also be involved in regulating MCP-1 expression. The field of chemokine biology is expanding rapidly and MCP-1, as well as other chemokines yet to be investigated, may prove to be an important link between the hormonal and cellular events within the corpus luteum around the time of luteolysis.
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