Journal article

The Role of Relaxin in Normal and Abnormal Uterine Function During the Menstrual Cycle and Early Pregnancy

Sarah A Marshall, Sevvandi N Senadheera, Laura J Parry, Jane E Girling



The hormone relaxin is a 6-kDa peptide with high structural similarity to insulin. It is primarily produced by the corpus luteum during pregnancy but is also synthesized by other reproductive organs such as the uterus, decidua, and placenta. Relaxin binds to its receptor RXFP1, which has been localized to a wide variety of reproductive and nonreproductive tissues. The peptide's many uterotropic effects include stimulating uterine growth and vascularization, remodeling extracellular matrix components, and regulating vascular endothelial growth factor in preparation for implantation. Evidence also supports a role for relaxin in the systemic maternal vascular adaptations required for a healthy ..

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Funding Acknowledgements

The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Research from the authors was supported by an Australian Research Council Linkage Grant and an Australian National Health & Medical Research Council Project Grant. S.A.M. received a University of Melbourne Research Scholarship.