Effect of molecular hydrogen on uterine inflammation during preterm labour

Akira Iwase, Fumitaka Kikkawa, Hiroyuki Tsuda, Hua Li, Kenji Imai, Shinya Toyokuni, Takafumi Ushida, Tomoko Nakano, Tomomi Kotani, Yukako Itani

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DOI: 10.3892/br.2018.1082 DOI is the universal ID for this study.

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Intrauterine inflammation causes preterm birth and is associated with complications in preterm neonates. Thus, strategies aimed at suppressing inflammation are expected to be effective for reducing the risk of preterm birth and associated complications. Our previous studies demonstrated that molecular hydrogen (H2), an anti-inflammatory agent, prevented inflammation-induced impairment in foetal brain and lung tissues in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced rodent models. However, it remains unclear whether H2 is capable of inhibiting preterm labour. The aim of the current study was therefore to investigate the effect of H2 on inflammation-induced preterm labour. Pregnant ICR (CD-1) mice were divided into three groups: Control, LPS and H2 water (HW) + LPS. In the control and LPS groups, vehicle and LPS, respectively, were intraperitoneally injected on embryonic day 15.5. In the HW + LPS group, HW was administered 24 h prior to LPS injection. The time from LPS administration to parturition was compared between the LPS and HW + LPS groups. Maternal uterus was collected 6 h after LPS injection and the transcript levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, contractile-associated proteins (CAPs), matrix metalloproteinase-3 (Mmp3) and endothelin-1 (Et1) were assessed by reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction. The protein levels of cyclooxygenase-2 (Cox2) were also evaluated by immunohistochemistry. The time from LPS administration to parturition in the HW + LPS group was significantly increased compared with that in the LPS group (33.5±3.4 vs. 18.3±8.8 h, respectively, P=0.020). H2 administration also resulted in significantly higher progesterone levels compared with LPS treatment alone (P=0.002). The transcript levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, CAPs, Mmp3 and Et1 in the uteri of the LPS group were significantly higher than those in the control group (all P<0.05). In turn, all these levels with the exception of interleukin-8 and Mmp3 were significantly lower in the HW + LPS group compared with those in the LPS group (all P<0.05). The protein levels of Cox2 in the LPS group were also significantly increased compared with those in the control (P<0.001) and HW + LPS (P=0.003) groups. These results suggest that inflammation-induced changes in the uterus may be ameliorated through maternal H2 administration. Preventive H2 administration may therefore represent an effective strategy for the suppression of inflammation during preterm labour.

Publish Year 2018
Country Japan
Rank Positive
Journal Biomedical Reports
Primary Topic Pregnancy
Secondary TopicPreterm Birth
Model Mouse
Tertiary TopicUterine Inflammation
Vehicle Water, Commercial (Blue Mercury)
pH Neutral
Application Ingestion