Increased frequency of human leukocyte antigen-E inhibitory receptor CD94/NKG2A-expressing peritoneal natural killer cells in patients with endometriosis

Ricciarda Galandrini, Maria Grazia Porpora, Antonella Stoppacciaro, Federica Micucci, Cristina Capuano, Ilaria Tassi, Alessia Di Felice, Pierluigi Benedetti-Panici, Angela Santoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: To analyze the frequency of peritoneal natural killer (NK) cells expressing the human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-E receptor CD94/NKG2A in patients with endometriosis. Design: Case-control study. Setting: University hospital. Patient(s): Stage III and stage IV endometriosis, according to the revised American Society for Reproductive Medicine classification, was laparoscopically and histologically confirmed in 11 and 9 patients, respectively; 13 subjects without endometriosis were selected for the control group. Intervention(s): Collection of peripheral venous blood, peritoneal fluid, endometriotic tissue, and normal endometrium in subjects undergoing laparoscopy. Main Outcome Measure(s): Surface expression levels of CD94/NKG2A and CD94/NKG2C were detected by three-color cytofluorometric analysis. Semiquantitative HLA-E messenger RNA expression analysis was performed in endometriotic lesions and in eutopic endometrium. NK cell-mediated cytotoxic activity toward HLA-E positive target, DT360 cell line, was also determined. Result(s): In women with endometriosis, the percentage of CD94/NKG2A-positive peritoneal NK cells was significantly higher than in the control group. The CD94/NKG2A ligand, HLA-E, was detected at high levels in endometriotic tissue as messenger RNA transcript. Target cells bearing HLA-E were resistant to NK cell-mediated lysis in a CD94/NKG2A-dependent manner. Conclusion(s): Increased expression of CD94/NKG2A in peritoneal NK cells may mediate the resistance of endometriotic tissue to NK cell-mediated lysis, thus contributing to the progression of the disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1490-1496
Number of pages7
JournalFertility and Sterility
Volume89
Issue number5 SUPPL.
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2008

Keywords

  • CD94/NKG2 receptors
  • endometriosis
  • HLA-E
  • Peritoneal NK cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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