Elevated expression of CD147 in patients with endometriosis and its role in regulating apoptosis and migration of human endometrial cells

Highly expressed CD147 in ovarian endometriosis lesions with enhanced cell survival and migration in human endometrial cells may contribute to the progression of endometriosis.

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Aihong Jin, M.Sc., Hao Chen, Ph.D., Chaoqun Wang, M.Sc., Lai Ling Tsang, M.Sc., Xiaohua Jiang, Ph.D., Zhiming Cai, M.D., Hsiao Chang Chan, Ph.D., Xiaping Zhou, M.D.

Volume 101, Issue 6, Pages 1681–1687.e1



To examine the expression of CD147 in 60 human endometriosis lesions and how CD147 regulates migration and apoptosis in human uterine epithelial (HESs) cells.


Experimental clinical study and laboratory-based investigation.


Hospital and academic research center.


Sixty women with chocolate cysts and 16 control women without endometriosis.


Human uterine epithelial cells were treated with anti-CD147 antibody.

Main Outcome Measure(s):

Real-time polymerase chain reaction for detecting CD147 expression in 60 human endometriosis lesions; migration assay and CellTiter 96 AQueous One Solution Cell Proliferation Assay (MTS) assay for cell functional investigation; Western blot for detecting protein levels; gelatin zymography for evaluating the activity of matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) in cultured cells.


Expression of CD147 was significantly higher in ectopic endometrial tissues from patients with endometriosis than in normal endometrial tissues. Interference with CD147 function led to decreased migration and cell viability in HESs cells. Surprisingly, MMP-2 expression and activity were not changed after treating HESs cells with anti-CD147 antibody. Further examination revealed that immunodepletion of CD147 induced apoptosis in HESs cells, leading to the activation of caspase 3 and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase.


The results of the present study suggest that abnormally high expression of CD147 in ovarian endometriosis lesions with enhanced cell survival (reduced apoptosis) and migration, in an MMP-2–independent manner, may underlie the progression of endometriosis in humans.

Read the full text at: http://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(14)00145-9/fulltext

Fertility and Sterility

Editorial Office, American Society for Reproductive Medicine

Fertility and Sterility® is an international journal for obstetricians, gynecologists, reproductive endocrinologists, urologists, basic scientists and others who treat and investigate problems of infertility and human reproductive disorders.