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Ceska Gynekol. 2019 Spring;84(3):184-189.

NK cells not only in endometrium but also in ovulatory cervical mucus in patients with decreased fertility.



An increased number of NK cells is associated with autoimmune disorder and is known to play a role in infertility. The aim of our research was to monitor the density of NK cells CD56+ and CD16+ in ovulatory cervical mucus (OCM) and in endometrium in infertile women as well as in connection with the actual status of antibodies against phospholipids, sperm and HHV-6 antibodies.


Original aticle.


Genetika - Plzeň.


Seventy-two randomly selected women aged 20-39 (mean age: 32.3) years old resulted in fifty-seven patients with repeated unexplained miscarriages, and fifteen fertile healthy women. The hormonal status was studied including ovulation, the humoral autoimmune responses to eight phospholipids, trombophilia, karyotyping, hysteroscopy, and endometrium immunohistology. Patients were without any clinical and laboratory symptoms of vaginitis at the time of OCM sampling and endometrium study. In one patient antiphospholipid syndrome was present, and in one woman diabetes mellitus was identified. Uterine NK cells CD56+ , CD16+ and NK cells in OCM were identified by immunocytochemistry, antiphospholipid antiboides by ELISA. We used indirect MAR-test for study of local spermagglutinating antibodies in OCM. Indirect immunofluorescent method was used for detection of serum and OCM IgM, IgG antibodies against HHV-6 levels at the time of ovulation.


We found both high density of NK cells CD56+ and CD16+ in OCM and in endometrium in only two infertile women with repeated abortions. NK cells in OCM were missing in other samples of patients. The prevalence of high density of NK cells CD56+ in the endometrium was seen in twenty three (40%), NK cells CD16+ in eleven (19%), NK cells 56+ and NK cells 16+ together in eight (14%). Levels of serum and OCM IgG against HHV-6 in all examined patients were not elevated, no cervical sperm antibodies were found.


We compared density of NK cells CD56+ and CD16+ in OCM and secretory endometrium in all infertile patients. Our results show that cell mucosal activity in the cervical area at the time of ovulation in two infertile patients was evident. We excluded the abnormal number of NK cells owing to local and general viral infection (HHV-6). But our question still remains - are cervical NK cells fixed or still migrating from endometrium into OCM? New research is planned.


HHV-6; NK cells; endometrium; infertility; ovulatory cervical mucus

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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