• Cholestasis;
  • cytokines;
  • HLA;
  • immune;
  • pregnancy;
  • Th1/Th2

Citation Yayi H, Danqing W, Shuyun L, Jicheng L. Immunologic Abnormality of Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy. Am J Reprod Immunol 2010; 63: 267–273

Problem  Intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP) is a pregnancy risk because of the possibility of pre-term delivery and sudden intrauterine fetal death. Its pathogenesis is still under discussion.

Method of study  The analysis of the recent findings on the complex immunologic events that occur in ICP were performed.

Results  In ICP, an increase of type 1 cytokine (TNF-α, IFN-γ) associated with a decrease of type 2 cytokine (IL-4). The decreased production of the suppressor cytokine TGF-β2 may increase the type 1 cytokine. Fas appeared to be increased and FasL appeared to be decreased in syncytiotrophoblasts of ICP. The human leukocyte antigen gene (HLA-G, E) in extravillous trophoblasts of ICP were significantly decreased.

Conclusion  Th1/Th2 cytokine balance and HLA play important roles in the tolerance and maintenance of pregnancy. ICP may be resulting from breach of the maternal fetal immune tolerance during pregnancy.