Calcium pump epitopes in placental trophoblast basal plasma membranes

J. L. Borke, A. Caride, A. K. Verma, L. K. Kelley, C. H. Smith, J. T. Penniston, R. Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


The syncytiotrophoblast represents the primary cellular barrier between maternal and fetal circulations in the placenta. Large amounts of Ca2+ are transported across this barrier by mechanisms that are not clearly understood. To further understand this phenomenon, we examined rat and human placenta by immunohistochemical and protein blotting techniques with a monoclonal antibody raised against the human erythrocyte plasma membrane Ca2+ pump. Immunohistochemistry with this antibody showed specific staining in the human placenta of the basal (fetal facing) surface of the syncytiotrophoblast. In the rat placenta, immunohistochemistry also showed specific staining of the innermost (fetal facing) layer of the trophoblast and the basal surface of the endoderm of the intraplacental yolk sac. In Western blots of placental homogenates and membranes, the monoclonal antibody bound to a 140,000-mol wt band, characteristic of Ca2+ pumps in other tissues. Western blots of isolated basal membranes showed more intense staining than isolated microvillous membranes, confirming the results of the immunohistochemistry. In addition, Ca2+ transport in basal membrane vesicles from human placenta was inhibited by polyclonal antibodies prepared against the erythrocyte Ca2+ pump. We conclude that basal (fetal facing) layers of human and rat placentas contain a high-affinity Ca2+ pump situated to transport Ca2+ from the maternal to the fetal circulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26/2
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology


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