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Dev Comp Immunol. 1993 Jul-Aug;17(4):301-7.

Transplantation immunity in the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana: the rejection of integumentary grafts from Blatta orientalis.

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Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cincinnati, OH 45221.


The results from several previous studies have indicated that the American cockroach is able to respond to integumentary xenografts, but doubt remained as to whether cockroaches could effectively discriminate between self and allogeneic differences. This was emphasized by the fact that while one study reported that Periplaneta americana responded to grafts donated by the closely related genus Blatta orientalis, the data reported elsewhere, using a different assay system, found no such reactivity. Since we have subsequently reported, using a direct histological assay, that Periplaneta can in fact recognize and destroy integumentary allografts, we initiated a study to hopefully sort out the enigma presented by previous data using Blatta as a transplant donor. Integument from Blatta orientalis was transplanted orthotopically onto Periplaneta americana, and at various time points post-transplant, scored histologically for the survival of the subcuticular epidermal layer. The results clearly demonstrated that Periplaneta reacted to the Blatta tissue, because approximately 82% of the grafts had the epidermal layer destroyed by day 7 posttransplant. The kinetics of the response to Blatta was more in line with our allograft data, which would be in agreement with other work indicating that the closer the donor and recipient are on the phylogenetic tree, the less intense the reactivity to the foreign transplant.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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