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J Neuroimmunol. 2000 Sep 1;109(1):30-3.

Role of hormone-controlled Th1- and Th2-type cytokines in successful pregnancy.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Immunoallergology Unit, University of Florence, 85 Viale Morgagni, 50134, Florence, Italy.


Development of CD4+ helper T (Th) cells into type 1 (Th1) or type 2 (Th2) effectors, as characterized by their opposite pattern of cytokine production, can be influenced by several factors, including hormones. Progesterone promotes the production of IL-4 and IL-5, whereas relaxin promotes the production of IFN-gamma by T cells. Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), essential for embryo implantation, is up-regulated by IL-4 and progesterone. Moreover, the production of LIF and/or Th2 cytokines by decidual T cells contributes to the maintenance of pregnancy. Our results suggest that relaxin and progesterone may contribute to the regulation of the immune homeostasis during pregnancy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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