• Pre- and postinsemination cervical mucus;
  • spermatozoa;
  • white blood cells;
  • monoclonal antibody-coated magnetic beads

ABSTRACT: In this brief communication we report a simple and accurate method of isolating and quantifying specific leukocytes from midcycle human cervical mucus, using monoclonal antibody-coated magnetic beads. Cervical mucus samples (pre- and postinsemination) were broken down enzymatically and incubated with a series of these beads. This method of positive immunoselection consistently retrieved representative levels of leukocytes (x̄ = 73.8% ± 1.59%; mean leukocyte retrieval rate ± S.E.) from the cervical mucus samples. Significantly more leukocytes (P< 0.0001) were isolated from the postinsemination samples, the predominant leukocyte of which was the neutrophil, which comprised 83% of the leukocyte population. These results reaffirm that a leukocytic influx is initiated across the human uterine cervix following the introduction of semen samples, the function of which is possibly phagocytic clearance of the nonfertilizing population of sperm.