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Life Sci. 1987 Mar 30;40(13):1319-26.

Neuroimmunology: modulation of the hamster immune system by photoperiod.


Groups of adult male Syrian hamsters were kept in a long photoperiod (LD 14:10) or a short photoperiod (LD 10:14). After 12 weeks, half of the animals in each light:dark cycle were immunized with an immunogenic amino acid polymer. Exposure to short photoperiod was associated with a significant reduction in testicular, accessory sex organ, splenic and brown fat weights. However, photoperiod length did not influence whole body, thymic, adrenal or kidney weights. Spleens of immunized animals in the long photoperiod were significantly heavier than those of unimmunized animals in the long photoperiod, and both were heavier than spleens from immunized or unimmuized animals in the short photoperiod. This reflected increased splenic lymphocyte and macrophage counts. However, there was no difference in antibody production between animals kept in different photoperiods. These results demonstrate that the daily photoperiod length affects both hamster reproductive competence as well as selected immune parameters (splenic weight and mononuclear cell hyperplasia) but does not alter antibody production.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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