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Title: Immunopathology of Chlamydophila abortus infection in a pregnant mouse model
Author: Kerr, K.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2005
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To investigate progression and pathogenesis of infection, pregnant mice were inoculated at mid-gestation with C. abortus. This resulted in abortion on day’s 6-8 post-infection (p.i.). Progression of infection was monitored, with infected cells identified at the maternal-foetal interface on days 3 and 5 p.i. and chlamydial inclusions were scattered throughout the trophoblastic labyrinth of the placenta between days 3 and 7 p.i. Infected areas were accompanied by a maternal mononuclear inflammatory cellular infiltrate, including polymorphonuclear neutrophils, B cells and CD4 and CD8 T cells. C. abortus was cultured from both maternal and foetal tissues, with higher numbers present in placenta, the target organ. The immune response was characterised in the mouse model as a Th1 type immune response, similar to ovine infections. A dominant IgG2a antibody response was identified and IFN-γ mRNA and TNF-α mRNA expression in mouse tissues infected with C. abortus was detected by in situ hybridisation. A latent/subclinical persistent infection did not develop in non-pregnant mice infected with C. abortus and abortion did not occur in the subsequent pregnancy, in contrast to ovine infections. Repeat abortion in subsequent pregnancies did not occur in mice, similar to the situation observed in sheep. Mice were also immune to secondary infection in the subsequent gestation. Infection of pregnant mice resulted in abortion as observed in infected ewes, and a similar Th1 immune response is elicited in both sheep and mice. This model will allow the rapid screening of novel protein and DNA based vaccines to protect against chlamydial abortion.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available