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Parasit Vectors. 2013 May 4;6:135. doi: 10.1186/1756-3305-6-135.

Hepatic stellate cells increase in Toxoplasma gondii infection in mice.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Toxoplasma gondii is a ubiquitous protozoan parasite that can infect humans and animals. The severity of toxoplasmosis varies according to the immune status of the individual, parasite strain, and host species. In mammalian species, it has been observed that severe lesions of acute toxoplasmosis form in visceral organs such as the liver, lung, and spleen. Some epidemiological studies have reported an association of T. gondii infection with liver cirrhosis.

METHODS:

Acute infection was induced in fifteen 30-day-old normal Swiss albino mice. The mice were infected by intraperitoneal inoculation of 5000 T. gondii RH strain tachyzoites. The mice were sacrificed in groups of 5 at 2, 4, and 6 days after inoculation. Another group of 5 mice were used as the controls. Anti-glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and anti-T. gondii antibodies were used to compare GFAP-immunoreactive cells and anti-T. gondii-immunopositive areas in the liver between the T. gondii-infected groups and the healthy controls, respectively.

RESULTS:

There was a significant correlation between the numbers of GFAP-positive hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) when they were compared with T. gondii antigen immunostaining (p < 0.05). The amount of T. gondii immunostaining increased significantly with the increase in the number of HSCs.

CONCLUSIONS:

There is a significant relationship between the number of HSCs and T. gondii antigens, which may represent an active role of HSCs in liver pathology and the pathobiology of T. gondii-related hepatitis.

PMID:
23642259
[PubMed - in process]
PMCID:
PMC3659022
Free PMC Article

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