Differential expression of claudins in human endometrium and endometriosis

Regine Gaetje*, Uwe Holtrich, Knut Engels, Stefan Kissler, Achim Rody, Thomas Karn, Manfred Kaufmann

*Corresponding author for this work
18 Citations (Scopus)


Membrane proteins of the claudin superfamily are important components of cellular tight and adherens junctions. Although their exact function remains unclear, these proteins may play a role in tissue remodeling, a process which is associated with several diseases including endometriosis. In the present work we analyzed the expression of 13 members of the claudin family in the endometrium and peritoneum by microarray analysis. Real-time polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry in human endometrium and peritoneal endometriotic lesions were performed for validation of the expression of claudin-1, -3, -4, -5 and -7. Diminished expression of claudin-3, -4 and -7 in ectopic endometrium was frequently observed as indicated by all three methods. In contrast to a higher expression of claudin-5 mRNA detected in bulk biopsies of ectopic endometrium, immunohistochemistry revealed no alteration of claudin-5 protein expression in glandular cells of endometriosis samples. The downregulation of various members of the claudin family may contribute to endometrial cell detachment and increase the number of cells invading pelvic organs.

Original languageEnglish
JournalGynecological Endocrinology
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)442-449
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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