Antigenic heterogeneity of human cytotrophoblast and evidence for the transient expression of MHC class I antigens distinct from HLA-G.
Shorter SC., Starkey PM., Ferry BL., Clover LM., Sargent IL., Redman CW.
Expression of MHC class I antigens on trophoblast populations in first trimester human chorionic villous tissue was assessed by immunohistology. Antibodies used were W6/32 which recognizes a non-polymorphic framework determinant of HLA- A, -B, -C, MHM5 specific for HLA-B, C and 4E and B23.1 which are specific for HLA-B. Syncytiotrophoblast and villous cytotrophoblast were negative with all the anti (HLA class I) antibodies tested. Interstitial trophoblast cells within the maternal decidua were identified with a new antibody, NDOG5, which is specific for extravillous cytotrophoblast. Double labelling showed that they bind W6/32 but not 4E, MHM5 or B23.1; consistent with the expression of the monomorphic HLA-G. In contrast the cytotrophoblast cells of the cell islands and cytotrophoblast shell, which also express the NDOG5 antigen, were positive with W6/32, 4E, MHM5 and B23.1. Cell column cytotrophoblast cells were negative with all four MHC class I antibodies. These results suggest that differentiation of cytotrophoblast from noninvasive to invasive forms is associated with transient expression of class I antigens other than HLA-G on cytotrophoblast shell and cell island cytotrophoblast.