Characterization of endonuclease activity from excretory/secretory products of a parasitic nematode, Trichinella spiralis.
Double-stranded endonuclease activity was demonstrated for the first time in the excretory/secretory (ES) products of a parasitic nematode, Trichinella spiralis, which can reorganize host muscle cells. The endonuclease introduced double-stranded breaks to the native DNA. The ES double-stranded endonuclease(s) was sequence nonspecific, with a pH optimum below 6, and required divalent cations as a cofactor. Its activity was inhibited by the Zn2+ ion. It was detected mainly in the ES products of the infective-stage larvae of T. spiralis collected at 37 degrees C and was present in much smaller amounts in samples collected at 43 degrees C and in the products of T. pseudospiralis, a nonencapsulated species. The activity of endonuclease was blocked by antibodies against ES products. Zymographic analysis showed that the endonuclease activity was associated with at least three molecular forms, designated approximately 25, 30 and 58 kDa, respectively. (+info)
The role of urocanic acid in UVB-induced suppression of immunity to Trichinella spiralis infection in the rat.
The naturally occurring trans-isomer of urocanic acid (trans-UCA), found in the stratum corneum, absorbs ultraviolet light (UV) and isomerizes to the cis-form. Cis-UCA has been shown to impair some cellular immune responses, and has been proposed as an initiator of the suppression that follows UV irradiation. UVB exposure leads to an increase in cis-UCA in the skin of rats from about 10% to 40% of the total UCA. Previously it has been demonstrated that UVB lowers immune responses to Trichinella spiralis after oral infection of rats with the parasitic worm. In the present study we investigated the role of cis-UCA in the control of this parasitic infection. Rats were infected orally with T. spiralis and injected with different doses of cis- or trans-UCA subcutaneously. Mitogenic responses and the mixed lymphocyte reaction were not affected by either isomer. In contrast, the number of T. spiralis larvae in muscle tissue of infected rats was increased significantly in the cis-UCA-treated animals compared with the trans-UCA-treated animals. In addition, delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) to T. antigen in infected rats was significantly impaired by cis-UCA but not by trans-UCA. If rats were injected with a monoclonal antibody with specificity for cis-UCA 2 hr prior to UVB exposure, the UVB-induced suppression in DTH to T. spiralis and the increase in larvae counts were significantly inhibited compared with rats that were similarly injected with a control antibody. Thus cis-UCA can inhibit the specific resistance to parasitic infections and acts as an important mediator of UVB-induced suppression of immunity to T. spiralis in the rat. (+info)
Nematode-induced jejunal inflammation in the ferret causes long-term changes in excitatory neuromuscular responses.
Enteric infections in animals and humans have proven the link between mucosal inflammation and gastrointestinal motor dysfunction. The goal of the present investigation was to study the long-term effects of mucosal inflammation on the neuromuscular functions of the small intestine in a ferret model of primary Trichinella spiralis infection. Myeloperoxidase activity and isometric contractions of isolated jejunal muscles were studied on days 8, 30, and 60 postinfection (PI). The peak increase in myeloperoxidase activity seen on day 8 PI returned to normal levels by day 60 PI. Contractions of the longitudinal and circular muscles evoked by electrical field stimulation of enteric nerves on day 8 PI showed no difference when compared with uninfected controls. However, during this enteric phase of the infection, neurally mediated responses were characterized by a disturbance in the balance between cholinergic and nonadrenergic, noncholinergic (NANC) excitation with both a reduction of cholinergic and a reciprocal enhancement of NANC neurotransmission. On days 30 and 60 PI the amplitude of neurally mediated responses and the balance between cholinergic and NANC excitation were restored in the circular but not in the longitudinal muscle. In addition, there were changes in the effector function involving smooth muscle hyperresponsiveness to high K+ or carbachol on days 8, 30, and 60 PI. However, a significant reduction in EC50 for carbachol was found only on day 60 PI. The results demonstrate that T. spiralis infection results in alterations of muscle contractility and enteric neurotransmission that persist after the resolution of mucosal inflammation. (+info)
IL-5 contributes to worm expulsion and muscle hypercontractility in a primary T. spiralis infection.
Enteric nematode infections lead to increased interleukin (IL)-5 expression, eosinophilic inflammation, and intestinal smooth muscle hypercontractility. Although eosinophils release inflammatory mediators that cause smooth muscle contraction, the role of IL-5 and eosinophils in enteric smooth muscle hypercontractility is unclear. IL-5-deficient mice and their wild-type controls were infected with the nematode Trichinella spiralis. Intestinal parasites and eosinophils were counted, and jejunal longitudinal muscle contractility was assessed. During infection, IL-5 gene expression increased significantly in wild-type mice and was accompanied by significant intestinal eosinophilia in wild-type but not IL-5-deficient mice. Although both strains developed increased muscle contractility during infection, contraction was significantly less in the IL-5-deficient mice at days 16 and 21 postinfection. In addition, parasite expulsion was transiently delayed at day 16 in IL-5-deficient mice. Thus, in the nematode-infected mouse, IL-5 appears essential for intestinal eosinophilia and contributes to, but is not essential for, the development of muscle hypercontractility. IL-5 also appears to play a minor role in expelling a primary T. spiralis infection from the gut. (+info)
Second generation effects of maternal ethanol consumption on immunity to Trichinella spiralis in female rats.
The deleterious effects of maternal ethanol consumption on neonatal immune development and early immune responses has been well documented. However, the effects of such neonatal exposure to maternally consumed ethanol on the neonates' immune responses in their adult life, especially in combination with additional ethanol exposure, has received little attention. For these experiments, female rats were fed on either 6% ethanol or pair-fed isocaloric control Lieber-DeCarli liquid diets for 30 days prior to, and during, pregnancy and lactation. One day after weaning their pups, the mothers were infected with 1000 Trichinella spiralis larvae, and maintained on diets for an additional 20 days. At this time, they were challenged with 2000 T. spiralis larvae, killed 3 days later, and their immune status determined. These animals served as the first generation alcohol animals. Their female offspring served as the experimental second generation animals. These animals received maternal ethanol during pregnancy and lactation and control diet during their juvenile period (from weaning to 90 days of age). They were then subjected to a schedule of ethanol or pairfeeding, identical to the first generation dams. Two groups of second generation animals were established: Group 1 was exposed to ethanol during their dam's pregnancy and lactation periods only, with no subsequent ethanol treatment; Group 2 received ethanol during their dam's pregnancy and lactation periods and then again throughout their adult experimental period. Our previous studies showed only minimal changes following a secondary challenge in T. spiralis-immunized rats; however, neonates born to alcohol-consuming mothers did show some depressed secondary immune responses when challenged soon after weaning. We chose to use a secondary immune challenge to assess further immune alterations in second generation adult animals. No differences between any of the ethanol and pair-fed groups were observed in intestinal worm burdens, which is similar to data previously reported for adult alcohol-consuming animals. However, second generation group 2 animals demonstrated significantly reduced proliferation responses to T. spiralis antigen and Concanavalin A (Con A) stimulation relative to the ethanol first generation and to the second generation Group 1 animals. This group also demonstrated significantly lower absorbencies in the ELISA assay for specific IgM and IgG anti-T. spiralis antibodies than the pair-fed, ethanol first and second generation Group 1 animals. The proportion of total T cells and cytotoxic T cells was significantly lower and the proportion of natural killer cells was elevated in both second generation ethanol Groups 1 and 2 relative to the ethanol first generation and pair-fed groups. In addition, Group 2 second generation animals showed significantly lower proportions of total leukocytes and T cells than Group 1 second generation animals. Although secondary immune responses to T. spiralis infection were not altered in rats exposed to ethanol only as adults, exposure to maternal ethanol does affect some specific immune responses in second generation adult life and maternal exposure may exert cumulative immune effects in concert with later consumption of ethanol by offspring born to alcoholic mothers. (+info)
Dominance of immunoglobulin G2c in the antiphosphorylcholine response of rats infected with Trichinella spiralis.
The antibody response to the L1 stage of Trichinella spiralis has been described as biphasic. Worms resident in the intestine during the first week of infection stimulate an antibody response against a subset of larval proteins. L1 larvae in the muscle at the end stage of infection stimulate a second antibody response against tyvelose-bearing glycoproteins. Antityvelose antibodies protect rats against challenge infection with larvae. The aim of this study was to characterize the rat B-cell response against larval antigens during the intestinal phase of T. spiralis infection and to test the antiparasitic effects of such antibodies. Strain PVG rats were infected orally with 500 larvae. Antibodies specific for phosphorylcholine-bearing proteins of L1 larvae first appeared in serum 9 days postinfection. Absorption experiments showed that the majority of antilarval antibodies produced in rats 16 days after infection with T. spiralis were specific for phosphorylcholine-bearing proteins. A fraction of these antibodies bound to free phosphorylcholine. Immunoglobulin G2c (IgG2c) producing cells in the mesenteric lymph node dominated this early antibody response. IgG2c is associated with T-independent immune responses in the rat; however, a comparison of athymic rats with euthymic controls suggested that only a small fraction of the phosphorylcholine-related antibody response against T. spiralis was T independent. Phosphorylcholine is a common epitope in antigens of bacteria and nematode parasites and has been shown to be a target of protective immunity in certain bacteria. A monoclonal IgG2c antibody was prepared from infected rats and shown to be specific for phosphorylcholine. Monoclonal phosphorylcholine-specific IgG2c failed to protect rats against intestinal infection with T. spiralis. Therefore, our findings do not support a role for phosphorylcholine-bearing antigens in immune defense against T. spiralis; however, the potency of the immune response induced suggests an immunomodulatory role for the lymphocytes involved. (+info)
Epidemiological analysis of Trichinella spiralis infections of foxes in Brandenburg, Germany.
In a cross-sectional study conducted between March 1993 and February 1995, 7103 indiscriminately collected foxes were examined for Trichinella larvae. A total of 3295 serum samples were serologically investigated with an ELISA based on excretory-secretory antigen. The proportion of serologically positive animals ranged between 3.3% and 17.6% in random samples from individual counties or towns and resulted in an estimated overall prevalence of 7.7% (95% CI: 6.9-8.7%). Trichinella larvae were detected in the muscles of five foxes, corresponding to an estimated prevalence of 0.07% in the total sample (95% CI: 0.02-0.16%). The analysis of DNA of the Trichinella isolates by random amplification of polymorphic DNA (RAPD) lead to the identification of the isolates as Trichinella spiralis. The differences between serological and parasitological findings are discussed. (+info)
CD4 T cells and major histocompatibility complex class II expression influence worm expulsion and increased intestinal muscle contraction during Trichinella spiralis infection.
Expulsion of intestinal nematode parasites and the associated increased contraction by intestinal muscle are T cell dependent, since both are attenuated in athymic rodents. The CD4 T-cell subset has been strongly associated with worm expulsion; however, the relationship between these cells, antigen presentation, and worm expulsion is not definitive and the role of these factors in intestinal muscle hypercontractility has not been defined. We infected C57BL/6, athymic, CD4-deficient, CD8alpha-deficient, and major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC II)-deficient (C2d) mice with Trichinella spiralis larvae. We examined intestinal worm numbers, longitudinal muscle contraction, and MHC II expression. Numerous MHC II-positive cells were identified within the muscularis externa of infected but not uninfected C57BL/6 mice. C57BL/6 and CD8alpha-deficient mice developed large increases in muscle contraction, expelling the parasite by day 21. Athymic and C2d mice exhibited much smaller increases in muscle contraction and delayed parasite expulsion. CD4-deficient mice exhibited intermediate levels of muscle contraction and delayed parasite expulsion. To further examine the role of MHC II and CD4 T cells, we irradiated C2d mice and reconstituted them with C57BL/6 bone marrow alone or with C57BL/6 CD4 T cells. C57BL/6 bone marrow alone did not affect muscle function or worm expulsion in recipient C2d mice. Partial CD4 T-cell reconstitution was sufficient to restore increased muscle contraction but not worm expulsion. Thus, hematopoietic MHC II expression alone is insufficient for the development of muscle hypercontractility and worm expulsion, but the addition of even small numbers of CD4 T cells was sufficient to induce intestinal muscle pathophysiology. (+info)