Spontaneous abortion represents a common form of embryonic loss caused by early pregnancy failure. In the present study, we investigated the prophylactic effects of bee venom phospholipase A2 (bvPLA2), a regulatory T cell (Treg) inducer, on a lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced abortion mouse model. Fetal loss, including viable implants, the fetal resorption rate, and the fetal weight, were measured after LPS and bvPLA2 treatment. The levels of serum and tissue inflammatory cytokines were determined. To investigate the involvement of the Treg population in bvPLA2-mediated protection against fetal loss, the effect of Treg depletion was evaluated following bvPLA2 and LPS treatment. The results clearly revealed that bvPLA2 can prevent fetal loss accompanied by growth restriction in the remaining viable fetus. When the LPS-induced abortion mice were treated with bvPLA2, Treg cells were significantly increased compared with those in the non-pregnant, PBS, and LPS groups. After LPS injection, the levels of proinflammatory cytokines were markedly increased compared with those in the PBS mouse group, while bvPLA2 treatment showed significantly decreased TNF-α and IFN-γ expression compared with that in the LPS group. The protective effects of bvPLA2 treatment were not detected in Treg-depleted abortion-prone mice. These findings suggest that bvPLA2 has protective effects in the LPS-induced abortion mouse model by regulating Treg populations.
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