Co-dominant expression of the HLA-G gene and various forms of alternatively spliced HLA-G mRNA in human first trimester trophoblast

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Genes may be silenced at the transcriptional level by 'genomic imprinting' in such a way that only one of the parental alleles is expressed. Imprinting may be tissue-specific and in some cases it seems also to be time-dependent during development. The phenomenon has been studied in pre- and post-implantation developmental processes. Animal studies of genomic imprinting of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) antigens in the placenta have shown discordant results. To address this issue in the human placenta, we examined the expression of the non-classical human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class I gene, HLA-G. Genomic imprinting of the HLA-G locus could have implications for the interaction in the feto-maternal relationship. Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism (RFLP), allele-specific amplification and Single Strand Conformation Polymorphism (SSCP) analysis followed by DNA sequencing were performed on Reverse Transcription (RT) Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) products of HLA-G mRNA to examine the expression of maternal and paternal alleles. Our results demonstrate that HLA-G is co-dominantly expressed in first trimester trophoblast cells. A "new" non-synonymous base substitution in exon 4 was detected. We also investigated the different alternatively spliced forms of HLA-G mRNA in first trimester trophoblast and found the full-length transcript to be the far most abundant.
Original languageEnglish
JournalHuman Immunology
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)87-98
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 1998

Bibliographical note

Keywords: Alleles; Alternative Splicing; Base Sequence; DNA, Complementary; Female; Gene Expression; HLA Antigens; Heterozygote; Histocompatibility Antigens Class I; Humans; Molecular Sequence Data; Polymerase Chain Reaction; Polymorphism, Genetic; Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length; Polymorphism, Single-Stranded Conformational; Pregnancy; Pregnancy Trimester, First; RNA, Messenger; Sequence Analysis, DNA; Trophoblasts

ID: 16185580