Method of birth alters interferon-gamma and interleukin-12 production by cord blood mononuclear cells

Mark A. Brown, Parmis Y. Rad, Marilyn J. Halonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Many uncertainties exist regarding the capability of cord blood mononuclear cells (CBMC) to produce cytokines. A number of conflicting reports led us to examine the effects of method of birth on CBMC production of interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), interleukin-4 (IL-4) and interleukin-12 (IL-12). While constitutive production of IL-4 was found in both vaginally and cesarean-delivered infants, constitutive IFN-γ or IL-12 production was found in neither. CBMC from vaginally delivered infants responded to stimulation with concanavalin A/phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (Con A/PMA), phytohemagglutinin (PHA), and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) with significantly higher levels of IFN-γ than CBMC from unlabored cesarean section (CS) infants. Production of IL-12 was increased in the vaginally delivered group in response to LPS and PHA but not to ConA/PMA. In contrast, mode of delivery was not associated with differences in IL-4 production. These results indicate that mode of delivery significantly alters the capability of CBMC to produce some cytokines and therefore should be taken into account in interpreting fetal/neonatal mononuclear cell function studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-111
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Allergy and Immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2003


  • Cesarean section
  • Cord blood mononuclear cells
  • Cytokines
  • Labor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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