Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 104, Issue 1, pp 47–56 | Cite as

Effects of zinc deficiency and pinealectomy on cellular immunity in rats infected with Toxoplasma gondii

  • Abdulkerim Kasim Baltaci
  • Rasim Mogulkoc
  • Cem Seref Bediz
  • Aysel Pekel
Original Articles


The effects of zinc and/or melatonin deficiencies on cellular immunity were investigated in rats infected with Toxoplasma gondii. A total of 50 adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into 5 groups of 10 rats each. In group I, the rats were infected with T. gondii and fed a zinc-deficient diet; in group II, the rats were infected and their pineal gland was surgically removed. Group III included rats that were infected, pinealectomized, and fed a zinc-deficient diet. Group IV consisted of T. gondii-infested rats that received no treatment of any kind, and group V were normal controls. After 3 wk of treatment, all rats were sacrificed and the percentages of CD3, CD4, and CD8 lymphocytes, zinc, and melatonin levels in plasma and the percentage of lymphocyte in blood smears were analyzed. The CD3 ratios of groups I–III were significantly lower than those of groups IV and V (p<0.01). The CD4 lymphocytes were significantly higher in group IV than that in all other groups (p<0.05). In group IV, the CD8 lymphocytes were higher than in groups I–III (p<0.01) and those in group V were higher than for groups I and III (p<0.01). Lymphocyte incidence in group IV was higher than in the other four groups (p<0.01). The plasma zinc and plasma melatonin levels in groups I–III were significantly lower than those in the controls (p<0.01, both cases). These results suggest that zinc and/or melatonin deficiency have a negative influence on cellular immunity in rats with toxoplasmosis.

Index Entries

Zinc deficiency pinealectomy T. gondii infection toxoplasmosis cellular immunity 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abdulkerim Kasim Baltaci
    • 1
  • Rasim Mogulkoc
    • 1
  • Cem Seref Bediz
    • 2
  • Aysel Pekel
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PhysiologyMeram Medical School of Selçuk UniversityKonyaTurkey
  2. 2.Department of PhysiologyMedical School of Dokuz Eylul UniversityIzmirTurkey
  3. 3.Department of ImmunologyGulhane Military Medical AcademyAnkaraTurkey

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