Expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase messenger RNA, but not guanylate cyclase messenger RNA, depends on gestational age in rat myometrium

T. Okawa, K. Asano, H. Takahashi, S. Hashimoto, H. Anbe, A. Sato, Y. P. Vedernikov, George Saade, R. E. Garfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


We studied the expression of inducible nitric oxide (NO) synthase (iNOS) and soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC) mRNAs in pregnant rat myometrium. Expression of iNOS and sGC α1, β1 and β2 mRNA was analyzed in non-pregnant and pregnant (days 10, 14, 17 and 21) Wistar rats by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Expression of iNOS mRNA increased during pregnancy but decreased on day 21 of gestation. Expression of GC α1 mRNA was greater than GC β1 mRNA at all time points. Expression of uterine GC α1 and GC β1 mRNA did not change significantly during pregnancy and did not differ significantly from non-pregnant levels. The values of sGC β2 mRNA were below the limit of detection. In conclusion, the expression of iNOS mRNA increased during pregnancy in the myometrium and decreased at term, while the expression of sGC mRNA was not affected by pregnancy. Thus, it is the changes in NO production, rather than changes in its target, that are responsible for uterine quiescence during pregnancy and initiation of labor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-151
Number of pages6
JournalGynecological Endocrinology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes



  • iNOS
  • mRNA
  • Pregnancy
  • Rat
  • Soluble guanylate cyclase
  • Uterus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cite this