Isolation of fetal nucleated red blood cells from maternal blood in normal and aneuploid pregnancies

Belén Prieto, Mercedes Cándenas, Rafael Venta, Jack H. Ladenson, Francisco V. Álvarez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Fetal nucleated red blood cells (NRBC) have been widely reported in maternal blood during pregnancy. However, there is no consensus with regard to their presence in all pregnancies. Therefore, the usefulness of developing a feel NRBC-based nonin,asi,e method suitable for clinical prenatal diagnosis remains uncertain. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) method was used to evaluate the ability of one of our own monoclonal antibodies (mAb). 2B7.4, to isolate feel NRBC from maternal blood by magnetic activated cell sorting (MACS). Our mAb was able to isolate from 25 to 822 NRBC from all of the 45 maternal blood samples included in this study. A correct diagnosis was achieved in 21 out of 24 pregnancies carrying trisomic, fetuses (87.5%), with a fetal/maternal NRBC frequency of 8.4%. In contrast, a significantly lower percentage of fetal NRBC (0.2%) was observed in 22% of pregnancies carrying a chromosomally normal male fetus, that were correctly predicted. In conclusion, using 2B7.4 mAb we succeeded in isolating NRBC from the maternal blood samples, but most of the isolated cells were maternal in origin. Nevertheless, a higher number of fetal NRBC was found in the peripheral blood of pregnant women carrying aneuplold fetuses, which could allow development of a screaning method for prenatal diagnosis of fetal aneuploidies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667-672
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2002


  • FISH
  • Fetal erythroblasts
  • Magnetic activated cell sorting (MACS)
  • Prenatal diagnosis


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