Restoration of T cell responsiveness by thymosin: development of antituberculous resistance in BCG infected animals

N. E. Morrison, F. M. Collins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

T cell depleted (adult thymectomized, lethally irradiated, bone marrow reconstituted [THXB]), sham thymectomized (XB) and normal control mice were injected daily with 3 mg of calf thymosin for 16 days. On day 8 of the treatment, the mice, together with untreated controls, were infected intravenously with 4 X 106 viable Mycobacterium bovis (BCG Montreal). Growth of the BCG in the lungs and spleens was compared quantitatively for up to 100 days. Thymosin treatment reversed the progressive weight loss seen in BCG infected THXB mice and prevented their death due to the ongoing mycobacteriosis that developed in the T cell depleted animal. There was a late developing anti mycobacterial response in the thymosin treated THXB mice, which resulted in a progressive decline in viability for the lung and spleen populations over the 40 to 80 day period, when the corresponding counts for the untreated THXB mice remained relatively constant. The histopathology of the lung and the increased antibacterial activity seen in the thymosin treated THXB mice correlated with decreased [3H]deoxyribonucleic acid levels seen in the lungs and spleen compared with that present in the T cell depleted controls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)554-563
Number of pages10
JournalInfection and immunity
Volume13
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1976

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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