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BDCA-1+, BDCA-2+ and BDCA-3+ dendritic cells in early human pregnancy decidua

By Y-L Ban, B-H Kong, X Qu, Q-F Yang and Y-Y Ma


Dendritic cells (DCs) can acquire unique features or phenotypes in different tissue microenvironments and decide whether immunity or tolerance develops. DCs observed within the decidua have been implicated in pregnancy maintenance. However, the precise distribution of decidual DC subsets and their phenotypic characteristics are largely unknown. Using flow cytometry, we identified three DC subsets in normal human first-trimester decidua: BDCA-1+ CD19- CD14- myeloid DC type 1 (MDC1), BDCA-3+ CD14- myeloid DC type 2 (MDC2) and BDCA-2+ CD123+ plasmacytoid DC (PDC). The percentage of MDC1 to mononuclear cells in the decidua was similar to that in the peripheral blood controls. The percentage of MDC2 in the decidua was significantly higher than that in the peripheral blood controls, whereas the percentage of PDC was significantly lower. Both MDC1 and MDC2 subsets expressed human leucocyte antigen D-related, CD86 and CD80 at low levels, suggesting a characteristic of immature myeloid DCs. Immunoglobulin-like transcript 3, suggested to be involved in immune tolerance induction, was also expressed on decidual MDC1 and MDC2 subsets. In addition, as gestational age increased from 6 to 9 weeks, the numbers of MDC1 decreased but MDC2 increased significantly. This is the first study to demonstrate the presence of three previously unidentified BDCA-1+, BDCA-3+ and BDCA-2+ DC subsets in human decidua, these decidual DCs might play important role in the maintenance of pregnancy

Topics: Translational Studies
Publisher: Blackwell Science Inc
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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