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Maternal grandmother’s cells in cord blood

During pregnancy there is a physiological two-way exchange of cells between mother and foetus. Similarly, expectant mothers may have acquired cells from their mothers (GdM) and these latter cells may in turn be transferred to the fetus through the mother-fetus blood stream. In this study, it was therefore investigated whether microchimerism with maternal grandmother cells (GdMMC) is detectable in cord blood. Following the researchers’ analysis, microchimerism was indeed detected in 18% of the cord blood samples tested. A significant correlation between the risk of aneuploidies and the presence of GdMMC in cord blood was also observed. In addition, a significant decrease in HLA compatibility was found across three generations when GdMMC was detected in cord blood. In conclusion, transgenerational cell transfer may have implications from both an immune and evolutionary point of view and further studies are therefore needed.