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Human placental villi contain stromal macrovesicles associated with networks of stellate cells

Human placental villi contain stromal macrovesicles associated with networks of stellate cells
Human placental villi contain stromal macrovesicles associated with networks of stellate cells

Placental function is essential for fetal development and establishing the foundations for lifelong health. The placental villous stroma is a connective tissue layer that supports the fetal capillaries and villous trophoblast. All the nutrients that cross the placenta must also cross the stroma, and yet little is known about this region. This study uses high-resolution three-dimensional imaging to explore the structural complexity of this region within the placental villi. Serial block-face scanning electron microscopy and confocal microscopy were used to image the placental villous stroma in three-dimensions. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) was used to generate high resolution two-dimensional images. Stereological approaches were used to quantify volumes of stromal constituents. Three-dimensional imaging identified stromal extracellular vesicles, which constituted 3.9% of the villous stromal volume. These stromal extracellular vesicles were ovoid in shape, had a median length of 2750 nm (range 350-7730 nm) and TEM imaging confirmed that they were bounded by a lipid bilayer. Fifty-nine per cent of extracellular vesicles were in contact with a fibroblast-like stellate cell and these vesicles were significantly larger than those where no contact was observed. These stellate cells formed local networks with adherent junctions observed at contact points. This study demonstrates that the villous stroma contains extracellular macrovesicles which are considerably larger than any previously described in tissue or plasma. The size and abundance of these macrovesicles in the villous stroma highlight the diversity of extracellular vesicle biology and their roles within connective tissues.

0021-8782
1-10
Palaiologou, E.
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Etter, O.
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Goggin, P.
c2d225c4-b84d-4ead-a433-320057cb5fa9
Chatelet, D.S.
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Johnston, D.A.
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Lofthouse, E.M.
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Doherty, R.
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Pearson-Farr, J.
e7da2e7c-e8e8-47d6-aca4-86b1a5b90653
Sengers, B.G.
d6b771b1-4ede-48c5-9644-fa86503941aa
Torrens, C.
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Cleal, J.K.
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Page, A.M.
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Lewis, R.M.
caaeb97d-ea69-4f7b-8adb-5fa25e2d3502
Palaiologou, E.
a1c591e4-6bc8-4859-93af-c2d0bb9101a6
Etter, O.
65205ba0-c67e-4125-8455-e325f698d099
Goggin, P.
c2d225c4-b84d-4ead-a433-320057cb5fa9
Chatelet, D.S.
6371fd7a-e274-4738-9ccb-3dd4dab32928
Johnston, D.A.
b41163c9-b9d2-425c-af99-2a357204014e
Lofthouse, E.M.
c4004ff1-2ed3-4b80-9ade-583c742de59c
Doherty, R.
da82ae44-70e7-41d4-9150-6ab3ce459738
Pearson-Farr, J.
e7da2e7c-e8e8-47d6-aca4-86b1a5b90653
Sengers, B.G.
d6b771b1-4ede-48c5-9644-fa86503941aa
Torrens, C.
15a35713-0651-4249-8227-5901e2cfcd22
Cleal, J.K.
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Page, A.M.
17800ba3-c0b8-4ddf-b78c-94273b67189c
Lewis, R.M.
caaeb97d-ea69-4f7b-8adb-5fa25e2d3502

Palaiologou, E., Etter, O., Goggin, P., Chatelet, D.S., Johnston, D.A., Lofthouse, E.M., Doherty, R., Pearson-Farr, J., Sengers, B.G., Torrens, C., Cleal, J.K., Page, A.M. and Lewis, R.M. (2019) Human placental villi contain stromal macrovesicles associated with networks of stellate cells. Journal of Anatomy, 1-10. (doi:10.1111/joa.13082).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Placental function is essential for fetal development and establishing the foundations for lifelong health. The placental villous stroma is a connective tissue layer that supports the fetal capillaries and villous trophoblast. All the nutrients that cross the placenta must also cross the stroma, and yet little is known about this region. This study uses high-resolution three-dimensional imaging to explore the structural complexity of this region within the placental villi. Serial block-face scanning electron microscopy and confocal microscopy were used to image the placental villous stroma in three-dimensions. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) was used to generate high resolution two-dimensional images. Stereological approaches were used to quantify volumes of stromal constituents. Three-dimensional imaging identified stromal extracellular vesicles, which constituted 3.9% of the villous stromal volume. These stromal extracellular vesicles were ovoid in shape, had a median length of 2750 nm (range 350-7730 nm) and TEM imaging confirmed that they were bounded by a lipid bilayer. Fifty-nine per cent of extracellular vesicles were in contact with a fibroblast-like stellate cell and these vesicles were significantly larger than those where no contact was observed. These stellate cells formed local networks with adherent junctions observed at contact points. This study demonstrates that the villous stroma contains extracellular macrovesicles which are considerably larger than any previously described in tissue or plasma. The size and abundance of these macrovesicles in the villous stroma highlight the diversity of extracellular vesicle biology and their roles within connective tissues.

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Palaiologou_et_al-2019-Journal_of_Anatomy - Version of Record
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Accepted/In Press date: 6 August 2019
e-pub ahead of print date: 11 September 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 434443
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/434443
ISSN: 0021-8782
PURE UUID: e606a1f4-c926-4e25-984e-3bd8a728c04a
ORCID for D.A. Johnston: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-6703-6014
ORCID for E.M. Lofthouse: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-0175-5590
ORCID for B.G. Sengers: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-5859-6984
ORCID for J.K. Cleal: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7978-4327
ORCID for R.M. Lewis: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-4044-9104

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Date deposited: 24 Sep 2019 16:30
Last modified: 18 Feb 2021 17:20

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Contributors

Author: E. Palaiologou
Author: O. Etter
Author: P. Goggin
Author: D.S. Chatelet
Author: D.A. Johnston ORCID iD
Author: E.M. Lofthouse ORCID iD
Author: R. Doherty
Author: J. Pearson-Farr
Author: B.G. Sengers ORCID iD
Author: C. Torrens
Author: J.K. Cleal ORCID iD
Author: A.M. Page
Author: R.M. Lewis ORCID iD

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