Acta Vet. Brno 2023, 92: 251-258

Immunohistochemical analysis of selected stem cell markers including stage-specific mouse embryonic antigen 1 (SSEA-1) in porcine and bovine endometrium throughout the oestrous cycle

Petra Konečná1, Dominika Macháčová1, František Tichý1, Luděk Fiala2,3,4, Michal Kyllar5, Jiří Lenz1,4,6

1University of Veterinary Sciences Brno, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Anatomy, Histology and Embryology, Brno, Czech Republic
2Charles University Pilsen, Faculty of Medicine, Psychiatric Clinic, Department of Sexology, Pilsen, Czech Republic
3Charles University Prague, First Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Sexology, Prague, Czech Republic
4Cytohisto s.r.o., Břeclav, Czech Republic
5University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna, Department of Pathobiology, Institute of Morphology, Vienna, Austria
6Znojmo Hospital, Department of Pathology, Znojmo, Czech Republic

Received November 1, 2022
Accepted July 11, 2023

There has been a lack of research regarding endometrial stem cells in farm animals, and particularly, regarding epithelial stem/progenitor cells. We aimed to identify potential stem cell subpopulations in porcine and bovine endometrium by measuring the expression of selected stem cell markers (OCT3/4, CD44, SSEA-1, SOX10, CD73, and CD117) during the follicular and luteal phases of the oestrous cycle. We studied 28 endometrial tissue samples collected from 14 healthy, cycling pigs and cows. The endometrial mucosa of each sample was divided into basal, middle, and luminal portions, and the immunohistochemical staining intensity and percentages of cells that were marker-positive were recorded for each portion of the endometrium. Expression of OCT-3/4 was identified in the glands and stroma, and that of SOX10 and CD117 was identified in stroma of both porcine and bovine endometrium. In porcine endometrium, CD44 was only expressed in the glands, whereas SSEA-1 was expressed in the glands and stroma. In bovine endometrium, CD73 was only expressed in the glands. Differences in the expression of most of these markers were found between phases of the oestrous cycle and/or portions of the endometrial mucosa. Our data indicate the existence of both epithelial and mesenchymal stem cell subpopulations in the endometrium of pigs and cows during their oestrous cycles. The expression pattern of the stem cell marker SSEA-1 in porcine endometrium suggests a possible alternative location of the epithelial stem/progenitor cell population in the middle portion of the endometrial glands.


This study was supported by the project ITA of the University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences Brno (project no. 201011).


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