Effects of short-term administration of human chorionic gonadotropin on immune functions in cryptorchid children

M. Maghnie, A. Valtorta, A. Moretta, D. Larizza, M. A. Girani, F. Severi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


To delineate the effects of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) administration on immune responsiveness, immunological parameters including serum immunoglobulins, total and differential white blood cell count T and B lymphocyte membrane phenotype, in vitro, proliferative response to phytohaemagglutinin, Concanavalin A (ConA) and pokeweed mitogen were studied in 13 prepubertal cryptorchid boys before, during, and 3 months after hCG therapy. Before treatment, all the immunological parameters were normal except for an unexpected high percentage of T suppressor-cytotoxic cells (CD8+). During therapy, the absolute number of total peripheral blood lymphocytes, and that of total T-cells, T helper-inducer cells and of CD8+ subsets were diminished. The percentage of CD8+ cells and lymphocyte response to ConA decreased significantly and returned to normal after hCG withdrawal. The possible effects of long-term hCG treatment remain to be determined.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)238-241
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1991



  • Cryptorchidism
  • Human chorionic gonadotropin
  • Mitogens
  • T suppressor-cytotoxic cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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