Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Reprod Immunol. 2010 Jun;85(2):172-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jri.2010.02.009. Epub 2010 May 7.

Divergent immunomodulatory effects of recombinant and urinary-derived FSH, LH, and hCG on human CD4+ T cells.

Author information

  • 1Laboratorio di Immunologia, Istituto di Endocrinologia e Oncologia Sperimentale, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Napoli, Italy.


This study investigated the in vitro immune-modulating activities of recombinant versus highly purified urinary follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) at the cellular level. CD4(+) T cells were isolated from peripheral blood mononuclear cells obtained from ten healthy women (aged 19-30 years) with regular menstrual cycles during the follicular phase of their cycle. CD4(+) T cells were stimulated with anti-CD3/CD28 monoclonal antibodies as a T cell-specific mitogen. Proliferative and cytokine responses were analyzed at standard time points (72h). Recombinant FSH (r-FSH) and LH (r-LH) alone showed a modest capacity to influence proliferation and cytokine release by CD4(+) T cells. Conversely, their addition to T cells in combination with recombinant hCG (r-hCG) induced a powerful down-modulation of T cell proliferation, decreased interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) secretion and increased interleukin-10 (IL-10) production. These immune-modulating activities were not present when CD4(+) T cells were stimulated either in the presence of urinary-purified FSH (u-FSH) or human menopausal gonadotropin (HMG), alone or in combination with recombinant hCG. We are the first to suggest that urinary-purified gonadotropins do not display profound immune-modulating activities as compared with the recombinant preparations, despite their endocrine effects. Therefore, the use of the recombinant preparations in assisted reproductive techniques might be relevant not only for their well-documented endocrine actions but also for their impact on the transient immune tolerance known to favour embryo implantation and progression of pregnancy.

Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk