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1.
Article in Chinese | WPRIM | ID: wpr-873744

ABSTRACT

Objective To explore the mechanism of the intestinal barrier damage caused by Blastocystis hominis infections in rats. Methods Thirty SD rats were randomly divided into the control group, and the 1-, 3-, 6- and 9-week-infection groups, of 6 rats in each group. Rats in each infection group were orally infected with B. hominis trophozoites at a density of 2 × 108 parasites per rat, and the control group was given an equal volume of phosphate buffered saline solution. The 7-hour urine samples were collected 1, 3, 6 and 9 weeks post-infection for the measurement of the intestinal permeability. Then, rats were sacrificed using the cervical dislocation method, and the cecum specimens were collected for the detection of the intestinal epithelial cell permeability. The expression of tight junction-related Occludin and Claudin - 1 genes and apoptosis-related Bcl - 2 and Bax genes was quantified in cecum epithelial cells using the real-time fluorescent quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay, and cell apoptosis was detected in the rat cecum using the TdT-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) assay. Results The median urinary lactolose to mannitol ratios were 0.29, 0.72, 0.44, 0.46 and 0.38 in the control group, and the 1-, 3-, 6- and 9-week-infection groups, respectively, and the difference was statistically significant (H = 12.09, P < 0.05). B. hominis invasion and epithelial injury were observed in intestinal epithelial cells of rats infected with B. hominis, and transmission electron microscopy displayed the destruction of tight junctions between intestinal epithelial cells. The relative expression of Occludin, Claudin-1, Bcl-2 and Bax genes was 1.04, 0.62, 0.71, 0.68 and 0.96; 1.03, 0.61, 0.63, 0.76 and 0.86; 1.08, 0.70, 0.75, 0.74 and 1.03; and 1.00, 1.57, 1.33, 1.35 and 1.10 in the control group and the 1-, 3-, 6- and 9-week-infection groups, respectively, and all differences were statistically significant (F = 2.86, 2.85, 3.37 and 4.45, all P values < 0.05). The median number of positive staining cells were 1.00, 13.00, 9.00, 3.50 and 1.00 in rat cecum specimens in the control group, and the 1-, 3-, 6- and 9-week-infection groups, respectively, and the difference was statistically significant (H = 22.95, P < 0.01). Conclusion B. hominis infection may cause an increase in the rat intestinal permeability through triggering the apoptosis of intestinal epithelial cells to destroy the tight junction between intestinal epithelial cells, thereby destroying the intestinal barrier function.

2.
Article in Chinese | WPRIM | ID: wpr-876710

ABSTRACT

Objective To explore the dynamic expression of programmed cell death-1 (PD-1) and its ligand PD-L1 at the maternal-fetal interface of mice post-infection with Toxoplasma gondii at early pregnancy and examine its interaction with interferon-γ (IFN-γ). Methods A total of 20 mice at day 0 of pregnancy were randomly assigned into 4 groups, including the 12-day pregnancy control group (12 dpn group), 12-day pregnancy and infection group (12 dpi group), 18-day pregnancy control group (18 dpn group) and 18-day pregnancy and infection group (18 dpi group), respectively. On the 6th day of the pregnancy, mice in the 12 dpi and 18 dpi groups were injected intraperitoneally with 150 tachyzoites of the T. gondii PRU strain, while mice in the 12 dpn and 18 dpn groups were injected with the same volume of PBS. All mice in the four groups were sacrificed on 12th and 18th day of the pregnancy, and the number of placenta and fetus was counted and the weight of placenta and fetus was measured. Then, the placental and uterine tissues of the pregnant mice in each group were sampled for pathological examinations. The mRNA expression of PD-1, PD-L1, T. gondii surface antigen SAG-1 and IFN-γ genes was quantified using a quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) assay, and the correlation between PD-1 and IFN-γ expression was examined. In addition, the 12 dpn group, 12 dpi group, 18 dpn group, 18 dpi group, PBS negative control of the 12 pdi group and PBS negative control of the 18 dpi group were assigned, and the PD-1 expression was determined in the uterine and placenta tissues of the pregnant mice. Results Adverse pregnant outcomes were seen in mice in the 12 dpi and 18 dpi groups, including placental dysplasia and fetal maldevelopment, and the placental weights and fetal body weights were significantly lower in mice in the 12 dpi and 18 dpi groups than those in the 12 dpn and 18 dpn groups (t = 5.52, 11.44, 12.63 and 11.67, all P < 0.01). The histopathological examinations showed that the decidua and junctional regions of the placental tissues were loosely connected in the 12 dpi and 18 dpi groups, and a large number of inflammatory cells infiltration and congestion were seen in the placental and uterine tissues. qPCR assay detected significant differences in PD-1, PD-L1, IFN-γ and SAG-1 expression in the placental and uterine tissues among the 12 dpn, 12 dpi, 18 dpn and 18 dpi groups (F = 22.48, 51.23, 9.61, 47.49, 16.08, 21.52, 28.66 and 238.90, all P < 0.05), and the PD-1, PD - L1, IFN - γ and SAG - 1 expression was all significantly higher in the placental and uterine tissues of mice in the 12 dpi group than in the 12 dpn group (all P values < 0.05). The PD-1 and PD-L1 expression was significantly lower in the placental tissues of mice in the 18 dpi group than in the 18 dpn group (all P values < 0.05), and the IFN-γ and SAG-1 expression was significantly higher in the placental and uterine tissues of mice in the 18 dpi group than in the 18 dpn group (all P values < 0.05), while the PD-1 and PD-L1 expression was significantly lower in the placental and uterine tissues of mice in the 18 dpi group than in the 12 dpi group (all P values < 0.05). Immunohistochemical staining showed PD-1 expression in the inflammatory cells of the placental tissues of mice in the 12 dpi group, and no apparent PD-1 expression in the 18 dpi group, while strongly positive PD-1 expression was found in the uterine epithelium of mice in the 12 dpi group, and mildly strong expression was in the 18 dpi group. In addition, the IFN-γ mRNA expression was positively correlated with the PD-1 mRNA expression in placental (rs = 0.99, P < 0.01) and uterine tissues of mice in the 12 dpi group (rs = 0.97, P < 0.01) and in placental (rs = 0.82, P < 0.01) and uterine tissues of mice in the 18 dpi group (rs = 0.81, P < 0.01). Conclusions Following T. gondii infection at early pregnancy, the PD-1 and PD-L1 expression shows a remarkable rise at middle pregnancy and a reduction at late pregnancy in placental and uterine tissues of mice, which appears the same tendency with IFN-γ expression during the same time period, and PD-1 expression positively correlates with IFN-γ expression. The dynamic expression of PD-1 and PD-L1 on the maternal-fetal interface of mice may be mutually mediated by IFN-γ induced by T. gondii infection.

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