In vitro models of the human endometrium: evolution and application for women's health.

Journal Article (Review;Journal Article)

The endometrium is the inner lining of the uterus that undergoes complex regeneration and differentiation during the human menstrual cycle. The process of endometrial shedding, regeneration, and differentiation is driven by ovarian steroid hormones and prepares the endometrium and intrauterine environment for embryo implantation and pregnancy establishment. Endometrial glands and their secretions are essential for pregnancy establishment, and cross talk between the glandular epithelium and stromal cells appears vital for decidualization and placental development. Despite being crucial, the biology of the human endometrium during pregnancy establishment and most of pregnancy is incomplete, given the ethical and practical limitations of obtaining and studying endometrium from pregnant women. As such, in vitro models of the human endometrium are required to fill significant gaps in understanding endometrial biology. This review is focused on the evolution and development of in vitro three-dimensional models of the human endometrium and provides insight into the challenges and promises of those models to improve women's reproductive health.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Fitzgerald, HC; Schust, DJ; Spencer, TE

Published Date

  • February 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 104 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 282 - 293

PubMed ID

  • 33009568

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7876664

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1529-7268

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0006-3363

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1093/biolre/ioaa183


  • eng