Uterine Gpr83 mRNA is highly expressed during early pregnancy and GPR83 mediates the actions of PEN in endometrial and non-endometrial cells

Embryo and Endometrial Assessment

VOLUME 1, ISSUE 1, P67-77


Nataliya Parobchak, B.Sc., Shivani Rao, B.Sc., Ariel Negron, Ph.D., Jennifer Schaefer, B.Sc., Moshmi Bhattacharya, Ph.D., Sally Radovick, M.D., and Andy V. Babwah, Ph.D.



To characterize the expression and signaling of uterine GPR83 in vivo in the nonpregnant and pregnant mouse and in vitro in human endometrial and nonendometrial cells.


Controlled laboratory study.


Not applicable.


Not applicable.



Main Outcome Measures

Expression of uterine Gpr83 was determined by quantitative polymerase chain reaction throughout the estrous cycle and during early pregnancy in ovarian-stimulated and non−ovarian-stimulated mice and pregnant and pseudopregnant mice. Expression was also determined in ovariectomized mice after the administration of oil, E2, P4, or E2 + P4 and in stromal cells following 6 days of in vitro decidualization. GPR83 signaling was studied in human endometrial and embryonic kidney cell lines. Cells were treated by PEN, a GPR83 ligand, and PEN-induced extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) phosphorylation was assayed under conditions that blocked Gαq/11 and/or β-arrestin signaling.


Uterine Gpr83 is expressed throughout the estrous cycle and during early pregnancy; expression increases dramatically at the time of uterine receptivity, embryo implantation, and stromal cell decidualization. In the ovariectomized mouse, hormone add-back reveals that Gpr83 expression is highly responsive to the combined treatment of E2 and P4, and studies in the ovarian-stimulated mouse show that expression is also very sensitive to changes in E2 and P4 and is therefore tightly regulated by E2 and P4. At the implantation site, expression is elevated up to D6 of pregnancy and then declines rapidly on D7 and D8, suggesting that if there is any involvement in decidualization, it is likely associated with primary but not secondary stromal cell decidualization. This premise was supported by the observation that stromal cell decidualization in vitro progresses with a decline in Gpr83 expression. In ERα/PR-expressing endometrial Ishikawa cells, GPR83 mediates PEN signals in a Gαq/11-dependent manner, and studies conducted in HEK 293 cells lacking β-arrestin revealed that GPR83 also signals via a β-arrestin−dependent manner. When signaling by either one or both pathways is downregulated, cells exhibit a major reduction in responsiveness to PEN treatment, demonstrating that signaling by both pathways is significant.


We hypothesize that PEN/GPR83 signaling regulates uterine receptivity, embryo implantation, and primary stromal cell decidualization by coupling to Gαq/11- and β-arrestin−dependent pathways.

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