This LPS, together with LPS-induced secondary inflammatory mediators, are possibly involved in the growth of endometriosis in an autocrine or paracrine mechanism. There was no information until now about the presence of bacterial endotoxin in the pelvic environment. We examined the endotoxin concentration for the first time in the menstrual fluid (MF) and peritoneal fluid (PF) of women with or without endometriosis. We found that endotoxin (LPS) concentration in MF/PF was significantly higher in women selleck chemicals llc with endometriosis than those without endometriosis. The expression pattern of TLR4 in Mφ, endometrial cells and endometriotic cells was identical between women with endometriosis and those
without in the proliferative phase but this expression pattern appeared to be higher in the secretory phase of the menstrual GSK-3 activation cycle.[10, 12, 33] The production of HGF, VEGF,
IL-6 and TNF-α by LPS-treated peritoneal Mφ was significantly higher in women with endometriosis than that in women without endometriosis. This was evident at both protein and mRNA level. The blocking of TLR4 after pretreatment of Mφ with anti-TLR4 antibody significantly reduced the production of all these cytokines.[8, 10, 39] The addition of culture media from TLR4-blocked macrophages caused significant suppression in the growth of endometrial and endometriotic cells compared to that of TLR4 non-blocking macrophages. The direct application of LPS also promoted the growth of endometriotic cells derived from women with peritoneal endometriosis and was suppressed after pretreatment of cells with anti-TLR4 antibody. In a similar line of study, ESC derived from chocolate cyst linings of the ovary demonstrated that LPS-stimulated ESC produced a significant amount of TNF-α and IL-8, and addition of LPS to ESC promoted significant cell proliferation. This stimulating effect of LPS was abrogated after treatment with NF-κB inhibitor.
This indicates that as an initial inflammatory mediator, Thiamine-diphosphate kinase functional activity of LPS is regulated by both TLR4 at the receptor level on the cell surface and by NF-κB at the nucleus. These results also suggested that a substantial amount of endotoxin in MF/PF is involved in pelvic inflammation and may promote TLR4/NF-κB-mediated growth of endometriosis. Therefore, targeting TLR4 or NF-κB could be a new therapeutic strategy to reduce inflammatory reaction in the pelvic environment and prevent consequent growth of endometriosis. There may be two mechanisms for the residual accumulation of bacterial endotoxin in the pelvic environment: (i) translocation of E. coli or endotoxin from the gut through enterocytes and their entry into the pelvic cavity as demonstrated by Alexander et al.; and (ii) contamination of menstrual blood by E. coli after ascending migration from vagina.