Korean J Obstet Gynecol.  2003 Mar;46(3):606-611.

The Expression of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor and Intercellular Adhesion Molecule in Severe Preeclamptic Placenta

  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Catholic University Medical College, Korea.
  • 2Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Seoul, Korea.


To determine the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) and intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM-1) in placenta from pregnancies complicated by severe preeclampsia and normal pregnancies.
Placental tissues were obtained from 10 normotensive pregnancies (control group) and 20 severe preeclamptic pregnancies (preeclamptic group). Immunohistochemical staining of placental tissue was used to determine tissue expression of VEGF, PDGF and ICAM-1. The intensity of staining was evaluated by scoring as 0, 1, 2 and 3.
Immunolocalization of VEGF and PDGF was significantly observed in the syncytotrophoblast with less intense staining in intravillous stromal cells and intravillous endothelial cells of fetal vessels in preeclamptic group. There were no differences in immunolocalization of staining in control group. Intensity of VEGF and PDGF immunostaining in syncytotrophoblast was significantly increased in preeclamptic group. However, immunolocalization and the intensity of ICAM-1 staining were not significantly different in both groups.
The expression of VEGF and PDGF in the syncytotrophoblast was significantly up-regulated in severe preeclamptic placenta. These up-regulation of VEGF and PDGF might reflect that placental ischemia and hypoxic state in severe preeclampsia induce VEGF and PDGF in the syncytotrophoblasts of placenta. However the unchanged pattern of ICAM-1 expression in severe preeclampsia suggests that ICAM-1 is unlikely to be a factor by which the adverse pregnancy outcome arises in severe preeclampsia.


VEGF; PDGF; ICAM-1; Preeclampsia; Placenta
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