Human placental expression of K(V)9.3, a voltage-gated K channel linked to tissue oxygenation responses, has been suggested at the messenger RNA level but tissue localisation has not been described. We aimed to: (1) produce an antibody to human K(V)9.3 and (2) assess channel expression and distribution in human placental tissue. We determined human placental protein expression and localisation using an antibody to K(V)9.3. Antibody specificity was confirmed by Western blotting. Staining was observed in syncytiotrophoblast microvillous membrane, endothelial cells (in intermediate, stem villi and chorionic plate blood vessels) and vascular smooth muscle cells (large diameter vessels only) by immunohistochemistry. Expression was unchanged in tissue from women with small-for-gestational age babies. It was concluded that K(V)9.3 is localised to human placental vascular tissues and syncytiotrophoblast.
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