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J Parasitol. 2001 Apr;87(2):292-9.

Killing of Schistosoma mansoni sporocysts by hemocytes from resistant Biomphalaria glabrata: role of reactive oxygen species.

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Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, Corvallis 97331, USA.


The fate of Schistosoma mansoni (Trematoda) sporocysts in its molluscan host Biomphalaria glabrata (Gastropoda) is determined by circulating phagocytes (hemocytes). When the parasite invades a resistant snail, it is attacked and destroyed by hemocytes, whereas in a susceptible host it remains unaffected. We used 3 inbred strains of B. glabrata: 13-16-R1 and 10-R2, which are resistant to the PR-1 strain of S. mansoni, and M-line Oregon (MO), which is susceptible to PR-1. In an in vitro killing assay using plasma-free hemocytes from these strains, the rate of parasite killing corresponded closely to the rate by which S. mansoni sporocysts are killed in vivo. Hemocytes from resistant snails killed more than 80% of S. mansoni sporocysts within 48 hr, whereas sporocyst mortality in the presence of hemocytes from susceptible snails was <10%. Using this in vitro assay, we assessed the involvement of reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced by resistant hemocytes, during killing of S. mansoni sporocysts. Inhibition of NADPH oxidase significantly reduced sporocyst killing by 13-16-R1 hemocytes, indicating that ROS play an important role in normal killing. Reduction of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) by including catalase in the killing assay increased parasite viability. Reduction of superoxide (O2-), however, by addition of superoxide dismutase or scavenging of hydroxyl radicals (*OH) and hypochlorous acid (HOCl) by addition of hypotaurine did not alter the rate of sporocyst killing by resistant hemocytes. We conclude that H2O2 is the ROS mainly responsible for killing.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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