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Immunity. 2017 Dec 19;47(6):1100-1113.e6. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2017.11.018.

Natural Killer Cells Promote Fetal Development through the Secretion of Growth-Promoting Factors.

Author information

1
Institute of Immunology and the CAS Key Laboratory of Innate Immunity and Chronic Disease, School of Life Science and Medical Center, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China; Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China.
2
Anhui Provincial Hospital, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China.
3
School of Medicine, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100086, China.
4
Institute of Immunology and the CAS Key Laboratory of Innate Immunity and Chronic Disease, School of Life Science and Medical Center, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China; Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China. Electronic address: tzg@ustc.edu.cn.
5
Institute of Immunology and the CAS Key Laboratory of Innate Immunity and Chronic Disease, School of Life Science and Medical Center, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China; Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, Anhui 230001, China. Electronic address: ustcwhm@ustc.edu.cn.

Abstract

Natural killer (NK) cells are present in large populations at the maternal-fetal interface during early pregnancy. However, the role of NK cells in fetal growth is unclear. Here, we have identified a CD49a+Eomes+ subset of NK cells that secreted growth-promoting factors (GPFs), including pleiotrophin and osteoglycin, in both humans and mice. The crosstalk between HLA-G and ILT2 served as a stimulus for GPF-secreting function of this NK cell subset. Decreases in this GPF-secreting NK cell subset impaired fetal development, resulting in fetal growth restriction. The transcription factor Nfil3, but not T-bet, affected the function and the number of this decidual NK cell subset. Adoptive transfer of induced CD49a+Eomes+ NK cells reversed impaired fetal growth and rebuilt an appropriate local microenvironment. These findings reveal properties of NK cells in promoting fetal growth. In addition, this research proposes approaches for therapeutic administration of NK cells in order to reverse restricted nourishments within the uterine microenvironment during early pregnancy.

KEYWORDS:

aged pregnancy; decidual NK cells; fetal development; fetal growth restriction; growth-promoting factors; maternal-fetal interface; tissue-resident NK

PMID:
29262349
DOI:
10.1016/j.immuni.2017.11.018
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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