IL-2 receptor β-chain overexpressed transgenic (Tg2Rβ) mice lack NK cells, but the development of other lymphocyte subsets and macrophages remained apparently intact. These mice also exhibit intestinal mastocytosis. Helminth infection induces various immune responses, such as mast cells, goblet cells, eosinophils and IgE, mediated by Th2 cytokines. IL-4 is also important in the regulation of resistance and susceptibility to Heligmosomoides polygyrus infection. However, there are contradictory results about the relation between resistance to H. polygyrus and intestinal mastocytosis. The present study showed that Tg2Rβ mice suppressed worm fecundity with mastocytosis without an increase of the levels of goblet cells, eosinophils and IgE compared with control mice. These results clearly indicated that mast cells have the ability for to protect against H. polygyrus infection. However, additional studies are required to evaluate protective effector mechanisms against H. polygyrus.
2011 by the Japanese Society of Veterinary Science