Immunomodulation by the Female Sex Hormones
F.M. Menzies1, F.L. Henriquez1, *
Identifiers and Pagination:Year: 2009
First Page: 61
Last Page: 72
Publisher Id: TOIDJ-3-61
Article History:Received Date: 12/01/2009
Revision Received Date: 03/03/2009
Acceptance Date: 28/04/2009
Electronic publication date: 23/6/2009
Collection year: 2009
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Pregnancy is a highly regulated process, requiring strict control of the immune system in order to prevent rejection of the semiallogenic foetus. One aspect of pregnancy immunology that has been of great interest is the influence of female sex and pregnancy associated hormones, such as progesterone and oestrogen, on cells of the immune system.
This review evaluates studies investigating the ability of these hormones to modulate the function of cells of both the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system and mechanisms by which immunity to infection can be altered due to increased levels of progesterone and oestrogen. Finally, the influence of pregnancy on the most common autoimmune diseases, on toxoplasmosis and on malaria is reviewed.