CD4+CD28null T lymphocyte frequency a new marker of cardiovascular risk Relationship with polycystic ovary syndrome phenotypes

Study of CD4+CD28null T-cell frequency, a new marker of cardiovascular risk, in the different PCOS phenotypes showed that CD4+CD28null frequency was significantly higher in the nonhyperandrogenic phenotype than in other phenotypes.


Francesca Moro, M.D., Andrea Morciano, M.D., Anna Tropea, M.D., Francesca Sagnella, M.D., Carola Palla, M.D., Elisa Scarinci, M.D., Nicola Cosentino, M.D., Giampaolo Niccoli, M.D., Giovanna Liuzzo, M.D., Ph.D., Filippo Crea, M.D., Antonio Lanzone, M.D., Rosanna Apa, Ph.D, M.D.

Vol 98, Issue 6, Pages 1609-1615, December 2012



To study the frequency of CD4+CD28null T cells, which are aggressive T lymphocytes associated with recurrent coronary instability and type 2 diabetes mellitus, in the different polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) phenotypes and in the age and body-mass index-matched healthy women.


Retrospective cohort observational study.


Unit of human reproductive pathophysiology, university hospital.


A total of 167 PCOS patients and 102 control subjects.



Main Outcome Measure(s):

CD4+CD28null T cells frequency, high sensitive C-reactive protein levels, and other glucose-metabolic parameters.


CD4+CD28null frequency was significantly higher in all PCOS groups than in controls. CD4+CD28null frequency was significantly higher in non hyperandrogenic (H) phenotype (5.7%, range 3.2-7.1) than in phenotypes with H + Oligoamenorrhea (O) + polycystic ovary (PCO) (3.5%, range 1-5.8), H + O (3%, range 1.8-4.7) and H + PCO (2.63%, range 1.2-4.1). The relative risk of nonhyperandrogenic phenotype for PCOS women in the highest quartile for CD4+CD28null frequency as compared to PCOS women with the lowest quartile was 3.2 (95% confidence interval, 1.9-5.8).


The cardiovascular risk evaluation should be performed in all PCOS phenotypes. In particular we demonstrated that the non H phenotype has potentially increased cardiovascular risk, in terms of CD4+CD28null frequency.

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