Researchers Find Protein Function Essential for Pregnancy

Researchers have traced the functioning of a unique protein called Pre-implantation Factor, produced by healthy embryos, which takes care of the attachment of embryo directly and assist the mother to adapt to pregnancy.

The protein balances the maternal immunity and enhances attachment of the early embryo. It also affects the remodelling of uterine cells.

"Preimplantation Factor appears to be essential for pregnancy to succeed. For several decades, investigators have tried to isolate a compound that was absolutely required for pregnancy. We believe that Preimplantation Factor is in fact that compound," said Paidas.

The researchers also found that nearly 500 maternal genes and a number of proteins are situated underneath the uterine lining. When they are exposed to Preimplantation Factor, they show significant changes.

There are a couple of studies which are being conducted on the analysis of pregnancy viability, not only in humans but in animals as well. The reason behind this is that it is present in mammals universally.

These findings appeared in the present issue of American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

For decades, the investigators have been trying to identify the compound required for pregnancy.

PF was discovered by co-author Eytan R. Barnea, the Clinical Associate Professor in Obstetrics, Gynaecology & Reproduction at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.