Using Proteomics to Determine Key to Embryo Implantation Success

April 24, 2015
Bethany Degg
The Column

Volume 11, Issue 7

A new study presents a proteomics approach to investigate changes at the molecular scale that could control whether or not embyro implantation using IVF is successful.

There are many couples worldwide that are affected by infertility and require medical intervention to achieve a successful pregnancy. In vitro fertilization–embryo fertilization (IVF–ET) is one procedure that can be undergone; however, it can be limited by the low rate of embryo implantation. A new study published in the Journal of Proteome Research presents a proteomics approach to investigate changes at the molecular scale that could control whether or not implantation using IVF is successful.1

The authors state that around two-thirds of implantation failures in IVF are attributed to the receptivity of the membrane lining the uterus, the endometrium, which is a complex tissue that undergoes changes in response to hormone levels in the body. To detect the changes governing receptivity, the authors took a proteomics approach to screen for changes in proteins expressed in the tissue when receptive versus proliferative phase (non-receptive).

Clinical biopsy tissue samples were taken from 12 women undergoing IVF treatment and analyzed using high performance liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC–MS–MS). More than 2000 proteins were identified and quantified - 300 proteins were found to vary between the receptive and proliferative phase. According to the authors, the method developed could be performed in future studies looking at variations in protein expression in other endometrium-related diseases.

Reference

1. Q. Chen et al., Journal of Proteome Research14, 1831–1842 (2015).

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