Presenter: Ripla Arora, Ph.D. , Assistant Professor, Michigan State University
Topic: Form and Function: Uterine 3D structure-function relationships in early pregnancy
Although much is known about the molecular maternal-fetal interactions during implantation, the 3D architecture of the uterine environment in which the early embryo develops is not well understood. We use confocal imaging in combination with 3Dshape analysis to identify and quantify dynamic changes to the luminal and glandular structure of murine uterus in preparation for implantation. When applied to mouse mutants with known implantation defects, this method detected striking peri-implantation abnormalities in uterine morphology that cannot be visualized by histology. Analyzing the uterine and embryo structure in 3D for different genetic mutants, hormonal perturbations and pathological conditions will help uncover novel molecular pathways and global structural changes that contribute to successful implantation of an embryo. Our studies have implications for understanding how structure-based embryo-uterine communication is key to determining an optimal implantation site, which is necessary for the success of a pregnancy.
Ripla Arora is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology within the College of Human Medicine and a member of the Institute for Quantitative Health Science and Engineering at Michigan State University.