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Disease models

Matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP9)-deficient mice for modeling preeclampsia

Mouse fetuses and pregnant mice lacking Mmp9 could be useful in identifying therapies to treat preeclampsia. Maternal deficiencies in circulating MMP9 levels are associated with human preeclampsia. In wild-type and Mmp9-deficient pregnant mice, homozygous Mmp9 knockout embryos showed defects in implantation and placental development similar to those observed in human preeclampsia. In pregnant mice, homozygous Mmp9 knockouts showed maternal symptoms of preeclampsia, including increased blood pressure and proteinuria, whereas heterozygous Mmp9 knockouts and wild-type mice did not. Future studies could include utilizing the models to screen potential preeclampsia therapeutics.

SciBX 6(28); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.736
Published online July 25, 2013

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Plaks, V. et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA; published online June 17, 2013;
Contact: Zena Werb, University of California, San Francisco, Calif.