Ageing in human parturition: impetus of the gestation clock in the decidua
AuthorWijaya, JC; Khanabdali, R; Georgiou, HM; Kalionis, B
Source TitleBiology of Reproduction
PublisherOXFORD UNIV PRESS INC
AffiliationObstetrics and Gynaecology
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsWijaya, J. C., Khanabdali, R., Georgiou, H. M. & Kalionis, B. (2020). Ageing in human parturition: impetus of the gestation clock in the decidua. BIOLOGY OF REPRODUCTION, 103 (4), pp.695-710. https://doi.org/10.1093/biolre/ioaa113.
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Despite sharing many common features, the relationship between ageing and parturition remains poorly understood. The decidua is a specialized lining of endometrial tissue, which develops in preparation for pregnancy. The structure and location of the decidua support its role as the physical scaffold for the growing embryo and placenta, and thus, it is vital to sustain pregnancy. Approaching term, the physical support properties of the decidua are naturally weakened to permit parturition. In this review, we hypothesize that the natural weakening of decidual tissue at parturition is promoted by the ageing process. Studies of the ageing-related functional and molecular changes in the decidua at parturition are reviewed and classified using hallmarks of ageing as the framework. The potential roles of decidual mesenchymal stem/stromal cell (DMSC) ageing in labor are also discussed because, although stem cell exhaustion is also a hallmark of ageing, its role in labor is not completely understood. In addition, the potential roles of extracellular vesicles secreted by DMSCs in labor, and their parturition-related miRNAs, are reviewed to gain further insight into this research area. In summary, the literature supports the notion that the decidua ages as the pregnancy progresses, and this may facilitate parturition, suggesting that ageing is the probable impetus of the gestational clocks in the decidua. This conceptual framework was developed to provide a better understanding of the natural ageing process of the decidua during parturition as well as to encourage future studies of the importance of healthy ageing for optimal pregnancy outcomes.
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