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Revue du rhumatisme
Volume 68, n° 7
pages 577-583 (juillet 2001)
Received : 23 February 2001 ;  accepted : 14 April 2001
Microchimérisme dans les maladies rhumatismales
Microchimerism in rheumatic diseases.

Nathalie C.  Lambert * ,  J.  Lee Nelson
Immunogenetics D2-100, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 1100 Fairview avenue, Seattle, WA 98109-1024, États-Unis 

*Correspondance et tirés à part

Le placenta ne constitue pas une barrière complètement étanche car un échange cellulaire bidirectionnel se produit lors de la grossesse. Des études récentes montrent que des cellules foetales persistent dans la circulation maternelle plusieurs années après la grossesse. Les cellules maternelles peuvent également persister chez l'enfant. On appelle chimérisme la présence de ces cellules d'un autre organisme chez un individu, et le microchimérisme correspond à la présence d'un faible taux de cellules. La réaction du greffon contre l'hôte correspond à un chimérisme déclenché après transplantation de cellules souches et qui ressemble à certaines maladies auto-immunes comme la sclérodermie, le syndrome de Sjögren, la cirrhose biliaire primitive (CBP) et parfois les myosites et le lupus. La compatibilité HLA entre donneur et receveur joue un rôle clé dans la réaction du greffon contre l'hôte. L'ensemble de ces observations suggèrent une implication du microchimérisme et de la compatibilité entre système HLA dans certaines maladies auto-immunes. Des résultats préliminaires suggèrent que des cellules étrangères participent à l'émergence de certaines maladies auto-immunes chez l'hôte.

Mots clés  : gènes HLA ; grossesse ; maladies arthritiques auto-immunes ; microchimérisme.


The placenta is only a relative barrier as it is known that bi-directional cell traffic occurs during pregnancy. Recent studies indicate that cells can persist in the maternal circulation for years after pregnancy. Maternal cells can also persist in her progeny. The presence of cells from another individual is referred to as chimerism and low levels of non-host cells is referred to as microchimerism. Chronic graft-versus-host disease, a syndrome that occurs from chimerism after stem cell transplantation, resembles spontaneously occurring autoimmune diseases including systemic sclerosis, Sjögren's syndrome, primary biliary cirrhosis and sometimes myositis and systemic lupus. A key determinant of chronic, graft-versus-host disease is the HLA relationship of host and donor cells. These observations, when considered together, led to the hypothesis that microchimerism and HLA relationships are involved in the pathogenesis of some autoimmune diseases. Results of initial studies led support to the concept that non-host cells participate, in the pathogenesis of some autoimmune diseases.

Mots clés  : autoimmune rheumatic disease ; HLA genes ; microchimerism ; pregnancy.

© 2001  Éditions scientifiques et médicales Elsevier SAS. All Rights Reserved.

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