The goal of this study was to determine if caprine conceptuses express lectin-like receptors for endometrial H-type 1 (HT1) antigen.METHOD OF STUDY
Conceptus tissues were collected during the apposition, adhesion and attachment phases of placentation and evaluated using immunofluorescence microscopy.RESULTS
Conceptus staining for the trisaccharide lacto-N-fucopentaose-1 was strong and uniform during apposition of fetal and maternal tissues but changed by day 25 of pregnancy when large aggregates of intense staining were observed. Monoclonal antibodies to galectin-3 did not stain conceptus tissue during the apposition phase but intense punctate staining was observed after day 25. Strong uniform staining for Lewis Y antigen was detected only on day 17 of pregnancy.CONCLUSION
Conceptus tissue expresses potential receptors for endometrial HT1 antigen. Carbohydrate–lectin interactions may facilitate attachment of the apical surfaces of uterine epithelial cells and trophectoderm during the early stages of placentation.