• Immunology;
  • recurrent spontaneous abortion;
  • allele-specific hybridization

PROBLEM: The results regarding human leukocyte antigen (HLA) DQ a allele sharing in recurrent miscarriage couples are conflicting. The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of HLA DQ α allele sharing in our unexplained recurrent spontaneous abortion (RSA) patients using modern DNA analytical techniques.

METHODS: DNA was extracted from whole blood samples of 1) 51 couples with at least three miscarriages, and 2) 43 fertile couples (with at least seven children and no known history of recurrent miscarriage). The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to amplify the second exon of the HLA DQ α locus on chromosome 6. Genotypes were identified by allele specific hybridization with 12 sequence-specific oligonucleotide probes.

RESULTS: 47% of recurrent miscarriage couples and 35% of fertile couples shared no alleles. 47% of recurrent miscarriage couples compared to 58% of fertile couples shared one allele, and 6% of recurrent miscarriage couples and 7% of fertile couples shared two alleles.

CONCLUSIONS: Reproductive partners with unexplained recurrent pregnancy loss have no increased frequency of HLA DQ α allele sharing. It is unlikely that HLA DQ α genotyping will be helpful in the management of patients with RSA.