Transforming Growth Factor β as an Immunosuppressive Protein in Human Seminal Plasma

Authors

  • MARYANN NOCERA,

    1. Department of Diagnostic Immunology Research and Biochemistry, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, New York State Department of Health, Buffalo, New York
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  • T. MING CHU Ph.D.

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Diagnostic Immunology Research and Biochemistry, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, New York State Department of Health, Buffalo, New York
      Department of Diagnostic Immunology Research and Biochemistry, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, New York State Department of Health, 666 Elm Street, Buffalo, NY 14263.
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Department of Diagnostic Immunology Research and Biochemistry, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, New York State Department of Health, 666 Elm Street, Buffalo, NY 14263.

Abstract

PROBLEM: Human seminal plasma is known to exhibit immunosuppressive activity in seminal plasma.

PURPOSE: The purpose was to characterize immunosuppressive proteins in seminal plasma.

METHOD: Gel filtration fractions of 100 to >440 kDa were identified that inhibited DNA synthesis and killing activity of interleukin-2 stimulated lymphocytes.

RESULTS: The fractions exhibiting immunosuppression also inhibited DNA synthesis in a mink lung cell bioassay commonly used to measure the activity for transforming growth factor β (TGF-β). The negative growth activity was diminished by aTGF-β neutralizing monoclonal antibody. TGF-β was further detected in the active fractions by Western immunoblot.

CONCLUSIONS: These results identified TGF-β as an immunosuppressive protein in human seminal plasma and may provide insight into the role of immunosuppression played by seminal plasma, such as in reproduction and neoplasia.

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