Fusariotoxicosis from barley in British Columbia. II. Analysis and toxicity of syspected barley.
Fusariotoxin T-2, a trichothecene, was tentatively identified in barley samples which caused field outbreaks of mycotoxicosis in British Columbia. Geese died when fed the contaminated barley experimentally but mice were little affected after long term feeding. The methods used in the laboratory for trichothecene extraction and identification of T-2 toxin are described. (+info)
Orally exhaled nitric oxide levels are related to the degree of blood eosinophilia in atopic children with mild-intermittent asthma.
Increased levels of nitric oxide have been found in expired air of patients with asthma, and these are thought to be related to the airway inflammatory events that characterize this disorder. Since, in adults, bronchial inflammatory changes are present even in mild disease, the present study was designed to evaluate whether a significant proportion of children with mild-intermittent asthma could have increased exhaled air NO concentrations. Twenty-two atopic children (aged 11.1+/-0.8 yrs) with mild-intermittent asthma, treated only with inhaled beta2-adrenoreceptor agonists on demand and 22 age-matched controls were studied. NO concentrations in orally exhaled air, measured by chemiluminescence, were significantly higher in asthmatics, as compared to controls (19.4+/-3.3 parts per billion (ppb) and 4.0+/-0.5 ppb, respectively; p<0.01). Interestingly, 14 out of 22 asthmatic children had NO levels >8.8 ppb (i.e. >2 standard deviations of the mean in controls). In asthmatic patients, but not in control subjects, statistically significant correlations were found between exhaled NO levels and absolute number or percentage of blood eosinophils (r=0.63 and 0.56, respectively; p<0.01, each comparison). In contrast, exhaled NO levels were not correlated with forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) or forced expiratory flows at 25-75% of vital capacity (FEF25-75%) or forced vital capacity (FVC), either in control subjects, or in asthmatic patients (p>0.1, each correlation). These results suggest that a significant proportion of children with mild-intermittent asthma may have airway inflammation, as shown by the presence of elevated levels of nitric oxide in the exhaled air. The clinical relevance of this observation remains to be established. (+info)
Skin reaction and antibody responses in guinea-pigs sensitized to human leukaemia cells or their nuclei in combination with Bacillus Calmette-Guerin.
Guinea-pigs sensitized by subcutaneous injection of chronic lymphatic leukaemia (CLL) cells combined with Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) displayed good skin reacitons 24 and 48 h after challenge with CLL cells. Equally good responses were also demonstrated using nuclei from the leukaemic cells in combination with BCG. These reactions were significantly greater than those produced in the same manner but without BCG. Sera form the animals were examined for the presence of antibodies against CLL cells by cytotoxicity and immunofluorescence techniques. Only samples from guinea-pigs innoculated with CLL cells were found to contain significant antibodies. Histological examination showed that whereas leukaemic cells persisted at the sensitizing injection site leukaemic cell nuclei could not be visualized. It is suggested that because leukaemic cell nuclei in combination with BCG are able to induce good skin reactivity without provoking a vigorous humoral antibody response they may have possible advantages over leukaemic cells when used for immunotherapy. (+info)
Cell-mediated immune responses in owl monkeys (Aotus trivirgatus) with trachoma to soluble antigens of Chlamydia trachomatis.
The first temporal study of the cell-mediated immune responses (CMI) following ocular infections with Chlamydia trachomatis is presented. We examined the CMI of owl monkeys infected with trachoma to soluble antigens of C. trachomatis by leucocyte migration inhibition (LIF) and delayed hypersensitivity skin testing. Delayed hypersensitivity of a systemic nature developed after a local eye infection in owl monkeys; clearance of inclusions from conjunctival cells coincided with the onset of this response. The association of eye secretion and circulating antibodies with recovery from primary infection was not so striking. Both cellular and humoral immune responses persisted for at least 2 months, at which time all test animals were completely resistant to re-infection. The elicitation of cell-mediated immune reactions with solubilized chlamydial antigens may permit the isolation of specific antigens involved in the generation of protective immunity in the owl monkey model. (+info)
In vitro and skin testing for allergy: comparable clinical utility and costs.
Controversy exists concerning the appropriate use of skin testing and in vitro testing for the diagnosis of allergy, particularly inhalant allergy. Earlier comparisons of skin testing and in vitro testing concluded that skin testing had superior accuracy at lower expense. In light of new developments with in vitro allergy testing, however, this issue should be reconsidered. A review of the recent scientific literature indicates that in vitro and skin testing are highly correlated. However, without the existence of an independent gold standard for inhalant allergy, it is not possible to determine which test is more accurate. The accuracy of either test can be compromised if conducted using different protocols or having insufficient quality control. Given their respective trajectories for technological advancement, quantification, and quality control, in vitro testing may offer the more standardized approach. Although the cost per test of in vitro testing remains greater than that of skin testing, the per-patient costs of the two modalities appear to be comparable, given the greater number of allergens typically used in skin testing. In summary, both skin testing and in vitro testing are acceptable as frontline diagnostic tools. (+info)
Immunization with recombinant human granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor as a vaccine adjuvant elicits both a cellular and humoral response to recombinant human granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor.
Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) is an important cytokine for the generation and propagation of antigen-presenting cells and for priming a cellular immune response. We report here that use of recombinant human GM-CSF (rhGM-CSF), administered as an adjuvant in a peptide-based vaccine trial given monthly by intradermal injection, led to the development of a T-cell and antibody response to rhGM-CSF. An antibody response occurred in the majority of patients (72%). This antibody response was not found to be neutralizing. In addition, by 48-hour delayed type hypersensitivity (DTH) skin testing, 17% of patients were shown to have a cellular immune response to the adjuvant rhGM-CSF alone. Thymidine incorporation assays also showed a peripheral blood T-cell response to rhGM-CSF in at least 17% of the patients. The generation of rhGM-CSF-specific T-cell immune responses, elicited in this fashion, is an important observation because rhGM-CSF is being used as a vaccine adjuvant in various vaccine strategies. rhGM-CSF-specific immune responses may be incorrectly interpreted as antigen-specific immunity, particularly when local DTH responses to vaccination are the primary means of immunologic evaluation. We found no evidence of hematologic or infectious complications as a result of the development of rhGM-CSF-specific immune responses. (+info)
Clinical and pathologic evaluation of chronic Bartonella henselae or Bartonella clarridgeiae infection in cats.
Human Bartonella infections result in diverse medical presentations, whereas many cats appear to tolerate chronic bacteremia without obvious clinical abnormalities. Eighteen specific-pathogen-free cats were inoculated with Bartonella henselae- and/or Bartonella clarridgeiae-infected cat blood and monitored for 454 days. Relapsing bacteremia did not correlate with changes in protein profiles or differences in antigenic protein recognition. Intradermal skin testing did not induce a delayed type hypersensitivity reaction to cat scratch disease skin test antigen. Thirteen cats were euthanatized at the end of the study. Despite persistent infection, clinical signs were minimal and gross necropsy results were unremarkable. Histopathology revealed peripheral lymph node hyperplasia (in all of the 13 cats), splenic follicular hyperplasia (in 9 cats), lymphocytic cholangitis/pericholangitis (in 9 cats), lymphocytic hepatitis (in 6 cats), lymphoplasmacytic myocarditis (in 8 cats), and interstitial lymphocytic nephritis (in 4 cats). Structures suggestive of Bartonella were visualized in some Warthin-Starry stained sections, and Bartonella DNA was amplified from the lymph node (from 6 of the 13 cats), liver (from 11 cats) heart (from 8 cats), kidney (from 9 cats), lung (from 2 cats), and brain (from 9 cats). This study indicates that B. henselae or B. clarridgeiae can induce chronic infection following blood transfusion in specific-pathogen-free cats and that Bartonella DNA can be detected in blood, brain, lymph node, myocardium, liver, and kidney tissues of both blood culture-positive cats and blood culture-negative cats. Detection of histologic changes in these cats supports a potential etiologic role for Bartonella species in several idiopathic disease processes in cats. (+info)
Leishmanin skin test lymphoproliferative responses and cytokine production after symptomatic or asymptomatic Leishmania major infection in Tunisia.
Resistance to Leishmania parasite infection requires the development of a cellular immune response that activates macrophage leishmanicidal activity. In this study we have investigated the lymphoproliferative responses and in vitro cytokine production of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from individuals living in an endemic area for L. major infection in Tunisia. The results were compared with the DTH reaction of the leishmanin skin test (LST). Sixty-seven individuals were included in the study: 22 persons (age range 9-60 years) who developed, 2 years before the present study, a parasitologically confirmed localized cutaneous leishmaniasis (LCL) that healed spontaneously, and 45 individuals (age range 18-20 years) born and living in the same area, with no previous history of LCL. LST was positive (skin induration > or = 5 mm) in 20/22 cured cases of LCL and in 75% of healthy individuals without history of LCL. LST+ individuals expressed vigorous Leishmania-specific lymphoproliferative responses associated with in vitro production of interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) but not IL-4. Interestingly, IL-10 was detected in parallel with the highest levels of IFN-gamma in PBMC supernatants from 3/20 cured LCL and 8/25 individuals without history of LCL. Our results showed a 98% concordance between the DTH reaction assessed by LST and the in vitro proliferative assay induced by soluble leishmanial antigens. Moreover, proliferative assays as well as cytokine analysis did not show any significant difference of the immune memory to parasite antigens developed by patients who had overt cutaneous leishmaniasis and those who had apparently asymptomatic infection. (+info)