Objective: To investigate mRNA expression of metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-3 (TIMP-3) in ectopic endometriosis tissue and uterine endometrium from women with and without endometriosis throughout the menstrual cycle. Design: Molecular studies in human tissue. Setting: Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Reproductive Immunology Laboratory, Stanford University Medical Center. Patient(s): Fifty-three premenopausal woman (23 women with endometriosis and 30 women without endometriosis undergoing laparoscopic surgery). Endometrium and ectopic endometriosis tissue were obtained at the time of surgery.Intervention(s): None. Main Outcome Measure(s): mRNA expression from eutopic and ectopic endometrium was analyzed by quantitative, competitive PCR. Result(s): Both uterine endometrium and ectopic endometriotic tissue from women with endometriosis expressed significantly (P<.05) lower levels of TIMP-3 than endometrium from normal women. Also, ectopic endometrium expressed higher levels of MMP-9 and a higher ratio of MMP-9/TIMP-3 than eutopic endometrium from normal and endometriosis patients. Conclusion(s): These results suggest that ectopic and eutopic endometrium from endometriosis patients may be more invasive and prone to peritoneal implantation because of greater MMP and less TIMP-3 mRNA expression than endometrium from women without endometriosis. Thus, increased proteolytic activity may be one of the reasons for the invasive properties of the endometrium, resulting in the development of endometriosis.
- Competitive PCR