Labor Affects Cytokine Production in Newborns

Authors

  • H. Bessler,

    Corresponding author
    1. Hematology and Immunology Research Laboratory, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • A. Kuperman,

    1. Hematology and Immunology Research Laboratory, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • B. Beilin,

    1. Department of Anesthesiology, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • G. Klinger,

    1. Neonatology Unit, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • N. Gurary,

    1. Hematology and Immunology Research Laboratory, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • C. Mozes,

    1. Department of Anesthesiology, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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  • L. Sirota

    1. Neonatology Unit, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, Tel Aviv University, Sackler School of Medicine, Petah-Tiqva, Israel
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Hematology and Immunology Research Laboratory, Rabin Medical Center, Golda Campus, P.O. Box 121, Petah-Tiqva 49372, Israel.

Abstract

PROBLEM: To investigate whether the mode of delivery or the drugs given to the mother during labor may affect the newborns' immune system.

METHOD OF STUDY: Three groups of term newborns were included: A, spontaneously delivered with i.v. analgesia (n = 37); B, spontaneously delivered with epidural analgesia (n = 26); and C, delivered by cesarean section under general anesthesia (n = 29). Natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity, mitogenic response, and the capacity of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) to produce interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-2, IL-3, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α were examined.

RESULTS: NK cell cytotoxicity increased significantly in all three groups of newborns on the second day of life. Decreased IL-2 production was observed in newborns delivered by cesarean section. Spontaneous IL-1β secretion was higher in newborns to mothers treated with epidural analgesia. Spontaneous IL-6 secretion was elevated in infants to mothers undergoing general anesthesia and surgery or epidural analgesia. TNF-α production was increased in newborns delivered by cesarean section.

CONCLUSION: The immune response of the newborn is affected by the mode of delivery and/or drugs given to the mother during labor.

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