Aging and respiratory infections in laboratory animals
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Respiratory infections are considered to be one of the most important causes of death at senile age. This statement refers not only to human populations but also to laboratory animals. In reality, however, there are no strict observations proving a natural increase in pneumonia incidence in mice and rats. Moreover, a few experimental studies with various pathogens showed an absence of unambiguous changes in sensitivity, including towards the same pathogen. Sometimes, even a paradoxical reduction in mortality in old animals compared with young ones was observed. Thus, the study of age-related variations in factors of innate and adaptive immunity, which could be the cause of changes in the risk of death from respiratory diseases, as well as the influence of separate geroprotective agents, did not make it possible to obtain a clear picture. This situation is probably related not only to the ambiguity of age-related changes that occur in the respiratory system but also to the lack of standard and adequate models for studying this problem.
Keywordsrespiratory infections pneumonia in mice and rats aging in laboratory animals age-related changes in the immune system
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