Hormone replacement therapy reverses the decrease in natural killer cytotoxicity but does not reverse the decreases in the T-cell subpopulation or interferon-gamma production in postmenopausal women

Jehn Hsiahn Yang, Chin Der Chen, Ming Yih Wu, Kuang Han Chao, Yu Shih Yang, Hong Nerng Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To investigate the immunologic deviations of postmenopausal women before and after hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Design: Prospective study. Setting: University teaching hospital.Patient(s): Seventeen postmenopausal women (study group) and 17 women of reproductive age (control group). Intervention(s): Continuous usage of E2 valerate 2 mg/d and medroxyprogesterone acetate 5 mg/d in postmenopausal women in the study group. Main Outcome Measure(s): Immunophenotyping with flow cytometry, cytokine production with and without mitogen stimulation of the peripheral mononuclear cells, and a natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity test against K562 target cells by the 51Cr-release assay were performed in the control group and in the study group before, 1 month after, and 6 months after HRT. Result(s): NK cytotoxicity, interferon-γ production, and the T-cell subpopulation were significantly decreased, and the subpopulations of CD3+CD25+ and CD3+HLA-DR+ were increased in the study group before HRT when compared with those in the control group. After HRT was given for 6 months, however, the NK cytotoxicity increased significantly in the postmenopausal women to a value similar to that of the control group. Conclusion(s): Women after menopause are prone to impaired immune responses. Nevertheless, some of the impairment can be restored after HRT. Copyright (C) 2000 American Society for Reproductive Medicine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-267
Number of pages7
JournalFertility and Sterility
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2000
Externally publishedYes



  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Menopause
  • Natural killer cytotoxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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