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These structural changes in amnion basement membrane and cell attachment are temporally correlated with the rise in MMP-2 and MMP-9 activities, suggesting that the actions of the MMPs on basement membrane type IV collagen at this time are functionally significant. Further studies are needed to determine the relative contributions of changes in type IV collagen synthesis and alterations in other protein components to the overall decline in amnion type IV collagen at the end of pregnancy. Cheap Diskus Advair
On the basis of the dramatic changes in MMP-9 expression, we elected to focus our attention on this enzyme. The emphasis of this study on MMP-9 should not be construed as a dismissal of a role for MMP-2 in amnion extracellular matrix catabolism before parturition. The increase in MMP-2 activity and protein in the amnion on Day 21 suggests that this enzyme could also participate in type IV collagen breakdown. Vu et al. recently targeted the murine MMP-9 gene. The nullizygous mutants demonstrated an apparent defect in apoptosis in the skeletal growth plate, but no apparent reproductive abnormalities, although the fetal membranes were evidently not examined. Moreover, deficiency of MMP-2 does not appear to cause developmental abnormalities. However, these two enzymes may be able to compensate for each other in processes involved in amnion matrix degradation.
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