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J Reprod Immunol. 2002 Mar;54(1-2):133-42.

Cytokine expression in peripheral blood lymphocytes indicates a switch to T(HELPER) cells in patients with preeclampsia.

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  • 1Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, University of Cologne, 50924, Cologne, Germany.


We sought to determine whether cytokine expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells is altered in patients with preeclampsia and in patients with a history of recurrent spontaneous abortion (RSA). Twenty-four patients with preeclampsia and twenty patients with a history of RSA were included into the study. Two control groups consisted of twenty healthy pregnant and twenty healthy non-pregnant women. The intracellular expression of interleukin-2 (IL-2), interleukin-4 (IL-4) and interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) were determined in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) by flow cytometry as a measure of cytokine production. IL-2 synthesis was significantly elevated in the third trimester in preeclamptic patients in comparison with the control group. Non-pregnant women with RSA showed a significantly lower expression of IFN-gamma compared to the non-pregnant control group. Our data suggest an abnormal immune response in preeclamptic patients characterised by a shift to a predominantly Th1-type immunity.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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