Two-colour immunocytochemical staining of gamma (gamma) and epsilon (epsilon) type haemoglobin in fetal red cells

WE Mesker*, MCMOV Velzen, JC Oosterwijk, LF Bernini, MS Golbus, HHH Kanhai, GJB Van Ommen, HJ Tanke

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

36 Citaten (Scopus)


We have developed a two-colour immunocytochemical staining method for the detection of fetal and embryonic haemoglobin in erythroid cells. The method was applied to study these haemoglobin types in fetal red cells. Specimens from fetal blood (10 weeks), cord blood and fetal liver (14 weeks) as well as chorionic villus samples (10-13 weeks) were stained for gamma and epsilon chains using CY3 and FITC labelled antibodies. Morphometric analysis was applied to determine cell size. Samples from organs involved in early embryonic development contained relatively large erythroblasts expressing the epsilon globin chain (megaloblasts); later in gestation the gamma chain was co-expressed by the same cells which ultimately became smaller and contained HbF (alpha(2)gamma(2)) only. This phenomenon was confirmed in CVS samples in which all cell types were abundantly present. Since fetal erythroblasts are considered candidate cells for non-invasive prenatal diagnosis using FISH, we studied the phenotype of erythroblasts circulating in the maternal blood. The majority of erythroblasts in maternal blood appeared to be of the relatively small gamma globin-containing cell type. However, careful screening of the same maternal blood samples also revealed erythroblasts expressing epsilon or epsilon and gamma globins simultaneously, although at low frequency. Control specimens from non-pregnant women did not show nucleated red cells expressing either of the haemoglobin types.

These observations may contribute to the better recognition of fetal cells in the maternal blood for prenatal diagnosis. (C) 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)1131-1137
Aantal pagina's7
TijdschriftPrenatal Diagnosis
Nummer van het tijdschrift11
StatusPublished - nov-1998

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