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Conversely, women compared to men, show a reduced antibody-dependent cell-mediated (10, 11) and natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity (12, 13).
One F→M transsexual reported intake of oral contraceptives 6 months before baseline.
A first important observation is the higher prevalence of most autoimmune diseases in females compared to males (2).
Second, women compared to men, have higher serum levels of Ig M, Ig G (3–6), and distinct autoantibodies such as Ig G against the major microsomal antigen thyroperoxidase (TPO-Ab) (7–9).
P values were assessed by Wilcoxon signed ranks tests for paired samples.
Standardized RIAs were used to determine serum levels of testosterone (Coat-A-Count, Diagnostic Products, Los Angeles, CA), 5α-dihydrotestosterone (after extraction, Intertech, Strassen, Luxembourg), dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS; Diagnostic Products), 17β-estradiol (Sorin Biomedica, Saluggia, Italy), and, in 24-h urine samples, free cortisol (after extraction; Coat-A-Count, Diagnostic Products).
T1 cells seem to preferentially express the CC chemokine receptors, CCR1, CXCR3, and CCR5 (32–35), facilitating their selective migration into inflammatory lesions.
The factors that influence chemokine receptor expression effects of cross-sex steroid hormones on the immune system.
For logistical reasons, most measurements were obtained in randomly chosen subgroups (Table 1).
The investigation conformed with the principles outlined in the Declaration of Helsinki.
We analyzed T helper type 1 (T1) and type 2 cytokine patterns, chemokine receptor expression (n = 2 × 10), and Ig levels (n = 2 × 25) in transsexual men and women before and after 4 months of cross-sex hormone administration.
Antithyroperoxidase levels were compared between 186 transsexual males (treated 5 yr with estrogens) and 186 male controls.
To assess peripheral androgen activity, we measured serum 5α-androstane-3α,17β-diol glucuronide (Adiol G) (43) by RIA (Diagnostic Systems Laboratories, Inc., Webster, TX).