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Title: The role of interleukin-22 in the mouse model of malaria infection, Plasmodium chabaudi
Author: Kouassi, V. M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8503 6095
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2016
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Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the gene for the cytokine, interleukin-22, have been associated with severe malaria infection. This cytokine is known to have roles in protecting various tissues from the damaging effects of inflammation as well as by up-regulating the production of antimicrobial peptides. This thesis aims to investigate where IL-22 is produced in the mouse model of malaria infection, Plasmodium chabaudi in C57BL/6 mice, and whether this production provides protection from associated pathology. IL-22 expression was analysed through qRT-PCR and the use of an IL-22 cre x R26R eYFP fate reporter mouse. In the liver, there were increases in mRNA until day 5, when they decreased, and a similar pattern was observed in eYFP+ cells. In the lungs, there was also a decrease in il22 mRNA as well as eYFP+ cells after day 5 and this was shown to result from changes in the population of IL-22 producing γδ T cells. Decreases were observed in il22 mRNA in the small intestine with no change in eYFP+ cells in the small or large intestine. These eYFP+ cells were mostly comprised of innate lymphoid cells and a possibility may have been that a proportion of them had switched to producing IFN-γ due to increased IL-12 expression in malaria infection. C57BL/6 mice deficient in IL-22 (il22-/- mice) that were infected with P. c. chabaudi AS and P. c. chabaudi CB showed a decreased survival with increases in the liver enzymes. However changes in histopathology were not observed in the lungs, liver and intestine in the absence of IL-22 in malaria infection, suggesting the role of this cytokine may be subtle. Future work would need to further investigate whether the importance of IL-22 in malaria infection is due to its roles in protecting the integrity of the epithelia especially within the intestine and lung or its influences on the intestine microbiota.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available