HLA-G molecules: from maternal-fetal tolerance to tissue acceptance

Edgardo D Carosella, Philippe Moreau, Joël Le Maoult, Magali Le Discorde, Jean Dausset, Nathalie Rouas-Freiss
Advances in Immunology 2003, 81: 199-252
Over the past few years, HLA-G, the non-classical HLA class I molecule, has been the center of investigations that have led to the description of its specific structural and functional properties. Although located in the HLA class I region of chromosome six, the HLA-G gene may be distinguished from other HLA class I genes by its low polymorphism and alternative splicing that generates seven HLA-G proteins, whose tissue-distribution is restricted to normal fetal and adult tissues that display a tolerogeneic function toward both innate and acquired immune cells. We review these points, with special emphasis on the role of HLA-G in human pathologies, such as cancer, viral infection, and inflammatory diseases, as well as in organ transplantation.

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