Natural killer cells and HLA-G expression in the basal decidua of human placenta adhesiva

van Beekhuizen, H. J., Joosten, I., Lotgering, F. K., Bulten, J. & van Kempen, L. C., Dec-2010, In : Placenta. 31, 12, p. 1078-1084 7 p.

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  • Natural Killer Cells and HLA-G Expression in the Basal Decidua of Human Placenta Adhesiva

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Retained placenta is caused by abnormal adherence of the placenta to the uterine wall, leading to delayed expulsion of the placenta and causing postpartum haemorrhage. The mildest form of retained placenta is the placenta adhesiva (PA), of which the cause is unknown. The aim of our study was to explore possible differences in immune response in the basal decidua between PA and control placentas (CP). We performed a descriptive analysis of immunohistochemical differences in 17 PA and 10 CP. Our results show that in PA the amount of uterine natural killer (uNK) cells is significantly reduced (0.2 uNK cell/standardised area) as compared to CP (9.8 uNK cell/standardised area, p < 0.001) whereas the number of trophoblast cells and the expression of HLA-G by trophoblast are similar in the decidua of PA and CP. We speculate that adequate numbers of uNK cells in the basal decidua are needed for normal expulsion of the placenta.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1078-1084
Number of pages7
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adult, Cell Proliferation, Female, HLA Antigens/metabolism, HLA-G Antigens, Histocompatibility Antigens Class I/metabolism, Humans, Killer Cells, Natural/pathology, Placenta/pathology, Placenta, Retained/immunology, Pregnancy

ID: 118616075