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Article
June 28, 1985

Cellular Immunity to Sperm in Infertile Women

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology (Drs McShane and Schiff) and Medicine (Dr Trentham), Harvard Medical School, and the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology (Drs McShane and Schiff) and Rheumatology and Immunology (Dr Trentham), Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston.

JAMA. 1985;253(24):3555-3558. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350480063020
Abstract

To investigate further whether immunity to sperm contributes to some cases of infertility in women, the production of leukocyte inhibitory factor by blood mononuclear cells challenged with human sperm in vitro was measured in women with infertility associated with poor results of postcoital tests or long-term unexplained infertility. Five (36%) of 14 infertile patients but none of nine fertile volunteers responded significantly to sperm in this assay. No study subject had serum IgG or IgM antibodies to sperm detected. These data provide additional evidence consistent with the possibility that cellular immunity to sperm-specific antigen(s) functions in the primary pathogenesis of infertility in some women.

(JAMA 1985;253:3555-3558)

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