Maternal origin of transferrin receptor positive cells in venous blood of pregnant women

Anna Slunga-Tallberg, Wa'el El-Rifai, Mauri Keinänen, Kari Ylinen, Tapio Kurki, Katherine Klinger, Olavi Ylikorkala, Marcelo L. Larramendy, Sakari Knuutila

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


We studied the origin of transferrin receptor (CD71) positive cells in blood from seven women pregnant with a male fetus in order to explore if fetal cells could be detected among them. We used a technique that allows direct chromosomal analysis by in situ hybridization on immunologically and morphologically classified cells. Enrichment was performed by magnetic activated cell sorting (miniMACS)® using an anti-CD71 monoclonal antibody. The cells were immunophenotyped by alkaline phosphatase anti-alkaline phosphatase immunostaining with the same antibody. The origin of the immunophenotyped cells was studied by in situ hybridization using an X cosmid Y repeat chromosome specific probe cocktail. CD71 positive cells were found in six of the seven women at the range of 4 to 43 in respective samples. Over 90% of the CD71 positive cells were nucleated erythrocytes. None of the detected positive cells were shown to be fetal. Thus, the use of transferrin receptor antigen alone in combination with the miniMACS® may not be sufficient for enrichment of fetal cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)196-199
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Genetics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Immunomagnetic separation
  • MAC (morphology antibody chromosomes) technique
  • Maternal venous blood
  • Nucleated erythrocytes
  • Transferrin receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Maternal origin of transferrin receptor positive cells in venous blood of pregnant women'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this