An artificial placenta to understand pathological pregnancies – Futura-Scienze


British researchers have created an artificial placenta at a very early stage. This organoid should provide a better understanding of the complications observed in some pregnancies that do not complete.

When the placenta does not work properly, "This can cause serious problems, such as pre-eclampsia or abortion. […] But our knowledge of this important organ is very limited because we lack good experimental models "Margherita Turco, principal author of the study published in the scientific journal, explained in a note nature.

In general, medical research tests are the first animals the potential and reliability of new treatments for men. but "The human placenta is very different from that of other species, so animal models do not really work"Ashley Moffett, professor at the Department of Pathology at the University of Cambridge, who has been working for over 30 years placental cells. His research group has isolated and cultured cells called trophoblasts, which are formed only a few days after fertilization and then become the placenta and the umbilical cord.

Organoids to study placental abnormalities

Scientists have created what they call "mini placente", which reproduce in vitro the functioning of real placentas and secrete particular hormones and proteins that modify the metabolism of women during pregnancy. They hope that this "organoid" model will allow us to better study the anomalies in the development of the placenta, which can prevent the embryo from implanting properly or causing problems in the subsequent pregnancy.

It should also help to see how the medicine taken by the mother influences the placenta and understand why some infections pass this natural barrier (like the Zika virus) while others do not (like dengue fever, but closed). Last year, the same Cambridge team managed to replenish the uterine lining in culture – the tissue covering the inner lining of the uterus.uterus and in which implants the placenta in case of pregnancy.

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