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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

L-arginine transport by the microvillous plasma membrane of the syncytiotrophoblast from human placenta in relation to nitric oxide production: effects of gestation, preeclampsia, and intrauterine growth restriction.

Nitric oxide (NO) is an important regulator of placental perfusion, and its production is dependent on the activity of substrate (L-arginine) transporters. In the light of evidence for altered NO production in the feto-placental unit in preeclampsia and intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), we investigated gestational changes in human placental L-arginine transport by systems y(+) and y(+)L in purified microvillous plasma membrane vesicles. We also examined the effect of preeclampsia and IUGR on the activity of these transport systems and the relationship between transporter activity and NO production (nitrate/nitrite concentrations) in the feto-placental unit. Between first trimester and term, there was a significant positive correlation between system y(+) activity and gestational age (r = 0.36; P = 0.013; n = 47), but a significant negative correlation between system y(+)L activity and gestational age (r = -0.6; P < 0.0001; n = 47). The activity of these transport systems was not altered in preeclampsia or IUGR. In placentas from normal term pregnancies, there was no correlation between the activity of microvillous plasma membrane L-arginine transporters and nitrate/nitrite concentrations in umbilical venous plasma or placental homogenate.[1]


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