Localization of pro-inflammatory (IL-12, IL-15) and anti-inflammatory (IL-11, IL-13) cytokines at the foetomaternal interface during murine pregnancy.
The involvement of some interleukins (ILs) in early and established pregnancy has been convincingly demonstrated, but little is known about the potential role of the more recently discovered ones. However, since many of these have positive or negative regulatory effects on both NK and T cells, it is highly probable that they also have regulatory functions in both implantation and placental development. Therefore, as a first step in tackling this problem, we have investigated whether several recently described pro-(IL-12, IL-15) and anti-inflammatory (IL-11, IL-13) cytokines were expressed at the uteroplacental interface by use of immunohistochemistry at different stages of gestation in mice. Each of these molecules was found at the foetomaternal interface, with specific distributions and patterns of expression depending on both the cytokine itself and the stage of pregnancy. The significance of these data is discussed.