Molecular human reproduction

Altered activity of lysophospholipase D, which produces bioactive lysophosphatidic acid and choline, in serum from women with pathological pregnancy.

PMID 19297419


Altered lipid metabolism is associated with human abnormal pregnancy, such as pre-eclampsia and preterm labor, and potentially leads to fetus loss. A causative factor for the onset and progress of the systemic multifactorial syndromes associated with the pathological pregnancy is oxidized low-density lipoprotein, an active identity of which was postulated to be lysophosphatidic acid (LPA). We previously found that LPA is produced extracellularly by plasma lysophospholipase D (lysoPLD) activity of autotaxin, a tumor cell motility-stimulating protein. In this study, a convenient assay based on the choline released from endogenous substrate or exogenous lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) was used for comparison of serum lysoPLD activity among patients with normal and abnormal pregnancy. The serum choline-producing activity was found to be mainly due to autotaxin, and dependent on its dilution rate. There was some association between low dilution dependency of serum lysoPLD activity toward an exogenous LPC and high lysoPLD activity toward endogenous substrates in cases of patients with preterm labor and pre-eclampsia. However, there was no difference in the serum level of LPC between women with normal pregnancy and those with pathological pregnancy. These results indicate that production of bioactive LPA by lysoPLD activity is elevated by an unknown mechanism that may be related to increased availability of endogenous substrates LPC, but not its concentration in human serum. If the level of LPA in blood circulation is elevated in the pathological pregnancies in vivo, it may play a role in induction and/or progression of systemic vascular dysfunction seen patients with preterm labor or pre-eclampsia.