Dynamic observation of liver fibrosis in mice infected withSchistosoma japonica
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The expression of TNF-α in the liver at different periods postSchistosoma japonica infection and the effect on liver fibrosis after supplementary injection of these cytokines were investigated. The mice infected with schistosome cercariae were divided into 3 groups: normal control group, TNF-α-untreated infection group and TNF-α-treated infection group. ABC immunohistochemistry and pathologic image multimedia quantification system were applied to dynamically detect the activity of TNF-α. The results showed that the levels of TNF-α in the liver in TNF-α-untreated infection group were slowly decreased with prolongation of infection time (from 8th, 11th, 14th to 18th week), while in the TNF-α-treated infection group, those were increased significantly after intraperitoneal injection of TNF-α at 6th week after infection. At first to 8th week after the final injection of TNF-α, the intrahepatic TNF-α levels in the TNF-α-treated infection group were significantly higher than in the other two groups (P<0.01), and the granulomatous inflammation and fibrosis in the liver were also milder in the normal control group. It was concluded that at the early stage ofSchistosoma japonica infection mouse liver mainly released Th1 cytokine and TNF-α from Th1 activated macrophages. Six weeks after infection (post egg deposition), exogenous supplement with intraperitoneal injection of TNF-α could induce the enhanced expression of Th1 cytokines and alleviate the liver granulomatous inflammation and fibrosis.
Key wordsSchistosoma japonicum TNF-α liver fibrosis
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