Horm Metab Res 2014; 46(06): 384-389
DOI: 10.1055/s-0034-1368710
Endocrine Research
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Leptin does not Induce an Inflammatory Response in the Murine Placenta

S. Appel*
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
E-M. Turnwald*
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
M. A. Alejandre-Alcazar
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
J. Ankerne
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
E. Rother
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
R. Janoschek
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
M. Wohlfarth
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
C. Vohlen
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
,
M. Schnare
2   Institute for Immunology, University of Marburg, Marburg, Germany
,
U. Meißner
3   Hainstrasse 20, Bamberg, Germany
,
J. Dötsch
1   Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

received 26 September 2013

accepted 29 January 2014

Publication Date:
03 March 2014 (online)

Abstract

Leptin is described as a pro-inflammatory signal in fat tissue, which is released from adipocytes and in turn activates immune cells. Also, leptin levels are known to be increased in pregnancies complicated with enhanced inflammatory processes in the placenta. Hence, we assumed that increased leptin amounts might contribute to inducing an inflammatory response in the placenta. To test this hypothesis, pregnant mice were continuously infused with recombinant murine leptin s. c. from day g13 to g16, resulting in a 3-fold increase of maternal circulating serum leptin levels. Dissected placentas were examined for the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and TNF-alpha and the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 using qPCR analysis. No changes were found except for TNF-alpha, which was slightly elevated upon leptin stimulation. However, TNF-alpha protein levels were not significantly higher in placentas from leptin treated mice. Also, leukocyte infiltration in the labyrinth section of placentas was not increased. In summary, our data demonstrate for the first time that elevated leptin levels alone do not induce an inflammatory response in the placenta.

* These authors contributed equally to this work.