Is the Expression of Classical HLA Class I Antigens on Trophoblast of Importance for Human Pregnancy?
Article first published online: 6 SEP 2011
American Journal of Reproductive Immunology
Volume 40, Issue 3, pages 158–164, September 1998
How to Cite
CHRISTIANSEN, O. B., MOHAPELOA, H. P., PEDERSEN, B. and ROSGAARD, A. (1998), Is the Expression of Classical HLA Class I Antigens on Trophoblast of Importance for Human Pregnancy?. American Journal of Reproductive Immunology, 40: 158–164. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0897.1998.tb00407.x
- Issue published online: 6 SEP 2011
- Article first published online: 6 SEP 2011
- Accepted March 1, 1998
- HLA class I;
- natural killer cells;
- recurrent spontaneous abortion
PROBLEM: Human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-C and possibly also HLA-B seem to be expressed on the extravillous trophoblast. These antigens carry epitopes that function as ligands for natural killer (NK)-cell-inhibitory receptors. Antitrophoblast cytotoxicity mediated by decidual NK cells might be involved in miscarriage. We thus found it relevant to elucidate whether parental HLA-C and -Bw polymorphism play a role in recurrent miscarriage (RM).
METHOD OF STUDY: HLA-C and -Bw investigations by DNA-based techniques were undertaken in 35 couples with unexplained RM and in 30 couples with normal fecundity. The number of HLA-C- and -Bw-related supertypic specificities that can bind NK-cell-inhibitory receptors was evaluated in selected couples.
RESULTS: The proportions of couples with RM and control couples carrying four HLA-C alleles with the same NK-cell-inhibitory supertypic specificities were equal. In 46% of studied couples with RM, all four HLA-B alleles carried the HLA-Bw6 supertypic specificity, which was significantly higher than the corresponding frequency (17%) in the control couples (P < 0.02).
CONCLUSIONS: The expression of polymorphic HLA-C on trophoblasts does not seem to play a role in RM. Assuming that HLA-B is expressed on trophoblasts, we may suggest that the revealed predominance of HLA-Bw6 expression (which excludes the presence of HLA-Bw4—protective antigens) may predispose a particular couple to the RM phenomenon.