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Linkage disequilibrium between human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class II and HLA-G--possible implications for human reproduction and autoimmune disease

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A line of investigation indicates that one or several genes in the human major histocompatibility complex (MHC) influences reproductive success. Studies have revealed associations between human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class II genes and risk of recurrent spontaneous abortion (RSA) and pre-eclampsia. However, these genes are not expressed at the feto-maternal interface. Furthermore, associations between polymorphisms in the nonclassical HLA class Ib gene, HLA-G, and reproductive outcome have been demonstrated. HLA-G is expressed by extravillous trophoblast during pregnancy, making it a more obvious candidate gene for a possible influence on pregnancy outcome. HLA-G has immunomodulatory functions. We have studied linkage disequilibrium between HLA class II genes, primarily HLA-DRB1 alleles, and HLA-G alleles in women with RSA and their partners (n = 103) and in control women and their partners (n = 92). We found a significant linkage disequilibrium between HLA-DR3 and HLA-G*010102 in both the RSA and control populations. For all four studied HLA loci, the alleles in the haplotype HLA-DRB1*03.DQA1*05.DQB1*02.G*010102 was in clear linkage disequilibrium. This HLA haplotype has repeatedly been associated with different autoimmune diseases but also with RSA. The G*010102 allele includes a 14-bp sequence polymorphism in the 3' untranslated region of the gene, which has been associated with differences in HLA-G mRNA alternative splicing and stability. This 14-bp polymorphism has also been associated with RSA, pre-eclampsia, and outcome of in vitro fertilization. Implications of HLA polymorphism--and other polymorphic genes in the MHC for pregnancy outcome--and for autoimmune diseases during pregnancy are discussed.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftHuman Immunology
Vol/bind66
Udgave nummer6
Sider (fra-til)688-99
Antal sider12
ISSN0198-8859
DOI
StatusUdgivet - jun. 2005

ID: 188691652