Objective: To evaluate the effects of low-molecular-weight heparins (LMWHs) on decidual heparin-binding epidermal growth factor–like growth factor
(HB-EGF) expression/secretion and on TNF-a–induced decidual apoptosis.
Design: Experimental study.
Setting: Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy.
Patient(s): Cultures of primary decidual cells isolated from human term placenta.
Intervention(s): The effects of LMWHs (tinzaparin and enoxaparin) on decidual HB-EGF expression and secretion were investigated by Western blot
analysis and ELISA, respectively. TNF-a–induced decidual apoptosis was evaluated by annexin V staining, terminal deoxynucleotide transferase–
mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) assay, and caspase activities.
Main Outcome Measure(s): Decidual HB-EGF expression/secretion and apoptotic rate induced by TNF-a were investigated.
Result(s): Tinzaparin enhanced decidual HB-EGF expression and secretion. TNF-a reduced the number of viable cells by inducing apoptosis.
Simultaneous addition of LMWHs (primarily tinzaparin) blocked the increase in annexin V– and TUNEL-positive cells and reduced the amount of
Conclusion(s): Both LMWHs induced a significant increase in decidual HB-EGF expression/secretion and reduced TNF-a–induced decidual apoptosis.
Tinzaparin demonstrated higher efficacy. (Fertil Steril 2012;97:169–77. 2012 by American Society for Reproductive