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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 1998 Jun 10;14(9):775-83.

Administration of interleukin 13 to simian immunodeficiency virus-infected macaques: induction of intestinal epithelial atrophy.

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INSERM U131, Institut Paris-Sud sur les Cytokines, Clamart, France.


Increase Th2 cytokine production may contribute to some clinical manifestations of HIV infection, and studies have suggested that IL-13 rather than IL-4 is involved in these conditions. We directly tested this hypothesis by administrating IL-13 to SIV-infected macaques. SIV-infected rhesus macaques received a daily subcutaneous injection for 21 days of either IL-13 (10 microg/kg/day) or a placebo. The four macaques treated with IL-13 experienced body weight loss (9.95 +/- 0.71%) related to intestinal tract damage: they all suffered from a complete atrophy of duodenal villi. This was presumably due to premature epithelial cell death: proliferating Ki67+ cells in glandular crypts were as numerous as in control animals, but many epithelial cells developed apoptosis. The duodenal mucosa was infiltrated with cells expressing CD56 and PEN5, two markers of NK cells, and there was a deregulation of local cytokine and chemokine production characterized by a decrease in IL-10 gene expression (25% of controls) and an increase in gene expression for IFN-gamma (4-fold control), MIP-1alpha (8-fold control), and MIP-1beta (13-fold control). Thus, IL-13 can induce digestive epithelial cell injury in vivo in primates infected with a retrovirus. Therefore, its role should be considered in digestive manifestations of HIV infection as well as in other disorders associated with intestinal epithelial atrophy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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