Send to

Choose Destination
Birth Defects Res B Dev Reprod Toxicol. 2011 Feb;92(1):82-94. doi: 10.1002/bdrb.20285.

Prenatal TCDD causes persistent modulation of the postnatal immune response, and exacerbates inflammatory disease, in 36-week-old lupus-like autoimmune SNF1 mice.

Author information

Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.



Prenatal exposure to the persistent environmental pollutant and model Ah receptor agonist, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), has been shown to permanently suppress postnatal cell-mediated immunity. More recently, skewing of select adult T and B cell responses toward enhanced inflammation has also been described in C57BL/6 mice after prenatal TCDD. This raises questions about adverse postnatal immune consequences of prenatal TCDD in animals genetically predisposed to inappropriate inflammatory responses.


Lupus-prone SNF(1) mice were exposed to 0, 40, or 80 µg/kg TCDD on gestation day (gd) 12 and examined at 36 weeks-of-age for immunomodulatory effects that correlated with worsened lupus pathology.


Bone marrow pro- and large pre-B cells were decreased by prenatal TCDD, in both adult male and female mice, as were pre- and immature B cells. Splenic CD23(-) CD1(hi) and CD19(+) CD5(+) B cells were increased in males, as were B220(hi) B cells in females, further suggesting persistent disruption of B cell lymphopoiesis by prenatal TCDD. Female mice displayed decreased IL-10 production by ConA-activated splenocytes, while males underproduced IL-4. Autoreactive CD4(+) Vβ17a(+) spleen T cells were increased in both sexes by 80 µg/kg TCDD. Male mice but not females showed increased anti-ds DNA and cardiolipin autoantibody levels.


Prenatal TCDD augmented the hallmark indicators of SLE progression in the lupus-prone SNF(1) mice, including renal immune complex deposition, glomerulonephritis, and mesangial proliferation. Prenatal TCDD therefore caused persistent modulation of the postnatal immune response, and exacerbated inflammatory disease, in lupus-like autoimmune SNF(1) mice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center