A potential role for epidermal growth factor/α-transforming growth factor in human parturition

Roberto Romero*, Ying King Wu, Enrique Oyarzun, John C. Hobbins, Murray D. Mitchell

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Epidermal growth factor (EGF)/α-transforming growth factor (α-TGF) concentrations were measured in amniotic fluid by radioreceptor assay in non-laboring and laboring patients at term. The median concentrations of EGF/α-TGF were 1.28 ng/ml and 5.0 ng/ml in non-laboring and laboring patients respectively (p < 0.05, Wilcoxon test). EGF was then incubated with amnion cells in monolayer culture to ascertain the effect of this hormone on the release of prostaglandin E2. Experiments were carried out in quadruplicate in 11 separate primary amnion-cell cultures (EGF was used at 1 ng/ml and 5 ng/ml, respectively). An increased release of prostaglandin E2 into the media was found. The response was concentration-de-pendent (p < 0.01). We suggest that there may be a role for EGF in the mechanism of human parturition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-60
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 1989
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank professorM .J.N.C. Kierse from the Leiden University, The Netherlands, for the kind gift of antibodya gainstP GE,, and Camille Grzyboski, C.M.T. for expertt echnicala ssistanceT.h is studyw as supportedb y Grants from the Walter Scott Foundationf or Medical Researcha nd NIH grantsH D 20747a nd HD 20779. R.R. is the recipient of a Physician Scientist Award grant from the National Instituteso f Health.


  • Growth factor, epidermal
  • Growth factor, α-transforming
  • Human parturition


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