The terminal airways and microvasculature of five adult Baird's beaked whales (Berardius bairdii) lungs have been examined by means of light and scanning electron microscopy of corrosion casts. The respiratory system of the Baird's beaked whale has various anatomical features which allow them to attain great depths and remain submerged for long periods. The whale lung has components including hyaline cartilage and smooth muscle throughout, reaching as far as the peripheral bronchi, sphincters surrounding the terminal bronchioles, the thick alveolar septa with a connective tissue core and a bi-layer capillary bed, and a distinctive venous plexus of the pulmonary veins. The well-developed venous plexuses of the pulmonary vein are found in the interlobular connective tissue, and around the airways and pulmonary arteries with close apposition. The hyaline cartilage throughout the airways may increase the effective dead air space that accommodates most of the air forced from the collapsed alveoli during a dive. The sphincter might serve as a cock for regulating buoyancy and for trapping air in the alveoli to prevent their complete collapse and a sucking in of alveolar tissue as the dive becomes deeper. The venous plexuses might be for pooling the large volume of blood in the lung to conserve oxygen for deep and prolonged diving.
Interleukin 4 (IL-4) is an important regulatory cytokine produced by activated T lymphocytes and mast cells, and regulates the growth and differentiation of cells such as B and T lymphocytes. In the present study, recombinant thioredoxin (Trx)-porcine IL-4 (pIL-4) fusion protein was prepared by Escherichia coli (E. coli), and by using this protein as an immunogen, monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against pIL-4 were produced to establish a basis for a research on immune responses in pigs. Six stable hybridoma cell lines were successfully established and specific binding of each mAb to recombinant pIL-4 produced by E. coli and insect cells infected with recombinant baculovirus was shown by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and/or immunoblot analysis. Isotype analyses of these mAbs revealed that the subclass of 5 out of 6 mAbs was IgG1 and the rest was IgG2b. Further, assessment of their epitopes by competition binding assay indicated that the mAbs obtained in this study bound to 4 different epitopes. The recombinant proteins and mAbs produced in this study will be useful tools for the assessment of porcine immune system.
The c-Met proto-oncogene is the receptor for hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), which is a member of the tyrosine kinase family. Activation of the HGF/c-Met signal pathway leads to cell proliferation, motility, regeneration, and morphogenesis. In this study, the complete nucreotide sequence of complementary DNA (cDNA) of canine c-Met was cloned, and its distribution was determined in tissues. The canine c-Met cDNA clone had an open reading frame of 4419 bp that encoded a putative polypeptide of 1383 amino acids. The c-Met mRNA was expressed in a variety of canine tissues including peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), bone marrow, liver, kidney, lung, stomach, uterus, testis, thymus, lymph node, small intestine, colon, adrenal gland, thyroid gland, heart, muscle, skin, pancreas, ovary, prostate, spleen, fat, cerebrum, and cerebellum. In addition, the c-Met mRNA expression in normal and regenerated liver was examined. The levels of the mRNA increased 2-fold in regenerated liver compared to that found in normal liver, indicating that c-Met is involved in various functions including remodeling of canine hepatocytes.
We evaluated the immunotoxicity of deoxynivalenol (DON), a Fusarium mycotoxin, on bovine and porcine neutrophils in vitro by using two function parameters, luminol-dependent chemiluminescence and random migration under agarose. A 2-hr DON treatment suppressed the chemiluminescence of bovine and porcine cells by 42% and 35% (on average) at 10-5M, and by 19% and 26% at 10-6M. Slight suppression was observed at concentrations lower than 10-6M. However, after an 18-hr DON treatment, random migration of neutrophils of both species remained unaffected, even at the highest concentration (10-5M). Although further extensive studies are needed, to our knowledge this is the first study to have revealed in vitro that DON can affect neutrophil function.
Mice were inoculated intraperitoneally wih 34 different types of vegetable juices, and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) and interleukin-4 (IL-4) were measured as markers for the induction of Th1 and Th2 cells, respectively. Serum IFN-γ level was markedly increased in mice inoculated with bitter gourd (Momordica charantia) juice, but IL-4 levels were not increased with any of the 34 vegetable juices. Testing of the various components of bitter gourd, including peel, pulp, and seed, showed that the pulp induced the highest levels of IFN-γ. Trial immunogen including the heat extract of the pulp induced specific IgG2a antibody of the mice serum inoculated with this immunogen. These results demonstrate that bitter gourd pulp induced IFN-γ production and show its promise as a means of effective immunostimulatory therapy specific for Th1 cells and IFN-γ production.
Bovine and canine chromogranin A were extracted and purified from each specie's adrenal glands. Isolated bovine 70 kDa protein showed 100% identity to bovine CgA reported previously, whereas isolated canine 68 kDa protein showed 83.3% identity to bovine CgA by the NH2-terminal amino acid sequence analysis. Rabbit antibody to purified bovine protein (CgA) was found to immunologically cross-reatced with purified canine protein (CgA). In sandwich ELISA with anti-bovine CgA, concentration-dependent curves were obtained ranging from 0.3 to 20 μg/ml for canine CgA. From these findings, sandwich ELISA with anti-bovine CgA is found to be useful to determine the concentration of canine CgA.
Interleukin 10 (IL-10) genes of Djungarian, Chinese, and Syrian hamsters were cloned. The clones of IL-10 consisted of 537 bp nucleotides and 178 amino acids in full length, and the nucleotide and amino acid sequences exhibited a high degree of homology with those of the mouse and human. Since the number and position of signal sequences, N-glycosylations and cysteine sites in the IL-10 amino acid sequences of the hamsters were the same as those of the mouse, we suggest that the IL-10 molecular structures of the hamster are closer to that of the mouse than human.
Two kinds of FeIFN-α consisting of 166 amino acids (aa) and 171 aa were expressed in Escherichia coli, and the purified proteins were tested for antiviral activity on homologous and heterologous animal cells. Crude FeIFN induced in feline cells revealed antiviral activity on both homologous and heterologous animal cells. In contrast, both types of recombinant FeIFN-α revealed antiviral activity only on the feline cells. All of the FeIFN-α subtypes showed high activity to vesicular stomatitis virus, and the three species of feline viruses belonging to different families.
To determine the distribution of Babesia gibsoni infection in dogs in the eastern part of Japan, an epidemiological survey of dogs suspected of having B. gibsoni infection was attempted using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Thirty-five of 115 such dogs (30.4%) were positive by PCR and/or ELISA. The 35 positive dogs consisted of 28 Tosa dogs, 4 American Pit Bull Terriers, and 3 mongrel dogs in Aomori, Fukushima, Ibaraki, Gunma, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, and Nagano Prefectures. The positive dogs had a significantly lower rate of tick exposure and a higher rate of bites by other dogs. Twenty-two of 35 B. gibsoni-positive dogs were infected with hemoplasma, and the rate of infection was significantly higher than that of B. gibsoni-negative dogs.
As the comparative study was carried out on the susceptibility by the pursuit of parasitemia among the Djungarian, Syrian, and Chinese hamsters as well as BALB/c mice infected with the Syrian hamster-adapted Babesia microti strain, and Djungarian hamsters showed the highest parasitemia among them. Then, the other hematological parameters were pursued in the Djungarian hamsters infected with the hamster-adapted B. microti strain. Remarkable symptoms observed were hemoglobinuria clinically, anemia hematologically, and splenomegaly macroscopically during all over the observation period for 24 weeks post infection (PI). Parasitemia began to rise at 2 weeks and peaked at 4 weeks PI. After that, parasitemia decreased gradually but was maintained with a level of about 10% on average until 24 weeks PI at the end of the experiment. A decrease in the RBC count, Hb, and PCV, and an increase in the reticulocyte and WBC counts due to the development of immature neutrophils, lymphocytes and monocytes were recognized together with a rise of parasitemia. The hamsters had macrocytic hypochromic anemia due to the increase of MCV and the decrease of MCHC in the growth phase of the parasite. It was considered that the Djungarian hamsters will be useful for the infection examination, isolation, maintenance, and passage of B. microti in laboratory.
A skeletal myopathy is found in approximately 100% of rasH2 mice. To confirm detailed features of the rasH2 skeletal myopathy, the biceps femoris, diaphragm, triceps brachii, gastrocnemial (types I and II fiber-mixed muscles) and soleus muscle (type I fiber-dominant muscle) obtained from male rasH2 and non-transgenic littermates aged 10-13 and 34 weeks were examined. Variations in the muscle fiber size, early-scattered degeneration/necrosis and regeneration of muscle fibers were detected in 10-13-week-old rasH2 mice. The severity of the above muscular lesions was more prominent in older rasH2 mice. These lesions were noted in the type II myofiber dominant muscles (biceps femoris, triceps brachii and gastrocnemial). NADH-TR stain clearly demonstrated a disorganized intermyofibrillar network and necrotic change in muscle fibers. No specific morphological changes, like rod structure or tubular aggregation seen in some types of myopathy, were noted in Gomori trichrome and NADH-TR stains in the rasH2 mouse like in many types of muscular dystrophy. Electronmicroscopically, occasional muscle fiber degeneration/regeneration, invaded phagocytic cells, indistinct Z-band suggesting excessive contraction and dilatation of the sarcoplasmic reticulum were observed. In summary, the skeletal myopathy occurring in rasH2 mice is consistent with muscular dystrophy characterized morphologically by progressive degeneration and regeneration of myofibers. The myopathy is confined to the type II myofiber predominant muscles and is not associated with any pathognomonic lesions. These characteristics will provide us with a useful model for research in muscular dystrophy of diverse myofibers.
To know growth profiles of canine distemper virus (CDV) on Vero cells stably expressing canine signaling lymphocyte activation molecule (Vero-DogSLAMtag; Vero-DST cells), the propagation of three strains of CDV was tested in Vero-DST cells in comparison with parental Vero cells. Strain MD77 could grow well in both cell lines, but demonstrated no syncytium formation or indistinguishable rounding cytopathic effects (CPE) in Vero cells. Strains Onderstepoort and KDK-1 also grew well in Vero-DST cells with apparent syncytium CPE, while they grew less or no efficiently, respectively, in Vero cells. All three CDV strains demonstrated the peak titers, in Vero-DST cells before reaching to an extensive CPE and drastic decrease of titers at/after full CPE. Immunohistochemistry revealed that viral antigens of all CDV strains were found exclusively in the syncytia in Vero-DST cells, while in Vero cells, viral antigen was identified in their single cells for strain MD77 but none for other strains. Thus, every strain of CDV could grow well in Vero-DST cells and behaved differently against Vero cells. These results would be of practical value for workers of CDV because 1) In Vero-DST cells, by observation of distinct syncytium CPE, the highest titer or the best growth of virus could be identified; 2) In Vero cells, various CDV strains could be readily classified after propagation in Vero-DST cells.
Renal effects of the selective α2-adrenoceptor agonist, medetomidine, were investigated in anesthetized dogs. Animals were administered medetomidine 20 and 40 μg/kg intravenously (IV) and 80 μg/kg intramuscularly (IM) or 1 ml of saline IV. Urine and blood samples were collected before and at 30, 60, 90 and 120 min following medetomidine injection. Mean arterial blood pressure (MABP), renal blood flow (RBF), glomerular filtration rate (GFR), urine volume (Uv), urine osmolality (Uosm), free water clearance (CH2O), fractional clearance of sodium (FNa), plasma osmolality (Posm), plasma glucose levels and plasma antidiuretic hormone (ADH) concentrations were measured. The results showed that IV administration of medetomidine initially increased MABP 5-15 min followed by long-lasting decrease. The initial hypertension was not observed after IM administration, which was accompanied by a more profound hypotensive effects. RBF, GFR, Uv, CH2O increased after IV injection and decreased after IM. Medetomidine increased FNa and Posm and decreased Uosm. Plasma glucose levels initially increased and subsequently decreased. Plasma ADH concentration was decreased by IV injection but increased by IM administration. Our data imply that: 1) IV administration of medetomidine at dose rates of 20 and 40 μg/kg results in profound diuresis up to 2 hr; 2) Suppression of ADH release from the CNS is one of the mechanisms of medetomidine-induced diuresis although it may not be the principal one.
Electroretinography (ERG) is an effective method for the diagnosis of retinal disease. In the dog, dependable ERG recording is difficult without the use of an expensive device like a Ganzfeld full-field stimulator. The International Society for Clinical Electrophysiology of Vision has defined the standard flash stimulus condition (SF) and evaluation of the retina using the b/a ratio in humans. In dogs, evaluation using the b/a ratio has not been reported, whereas the intensity of SF has been defined. In this study, we performed a convenient ERG recording method using a contact lens electrode with a built-in light source (LED-electrode), and confirmed SF as reported previously. ERG recordings were performed on 15 healthy beagle dogs under sedation. We performed bilateral ERG at 12 different intensities after 30 min dark adaptation. After 10 min light adaptation, we recorded single flash cone and flicker cone response using the SF determined in this study. In this study, SF of 3.0 cd/m2/sec (6,000 cd/m2, 0.5 msec) resulted in b/a=2. The intensity for rod response that recorded only the b-wave was 0.0096 cd/m2/sec (80 cd/m2, 0.12 msec). We could achieve ERG for each response easily and smoothly under sedation, and without general anesthesia. Using an LED-electrode, we could perform more quantitative and reproducible ERG examinations than with traditional methods. We propose that the b/a ratio is the most useful parameter in ERG reporting for evaluating retinal function.
The objective of this study was to determine relationship of gestational age with measurement of diameter of head, orbit, trunk, long and short axis of heart, aorta, placentome, umbilical cord and umbilical vein in Korean black goats. In this study, ten pregnant Korean black goats (Capra hircus aegagrus) were used. Pregnancy diagnosis was performed with a 5 MHz linear transducer and ultrasonographic scan were performed at 60, 75, 90, 105, 120 and 135 days after mating with a 4-9 MHz convex transducer. For accurate measurement, all fetal organs were measured at least 3 times. The diameter of head, orbit, trunk, long and short axis of heart, aorta, placentome, umbilical cord and umbilical vein were significantly increased with the gestational age (p<0.05). Of these parameters, trunk (r=0.8876; p<0.001), long axis of heart (r=0.9168; p<0.001) and short axis of heart (r=0.8819; p<0.001) proved to be the more effective measurements than other parameters, as it correlated well with gestational age. Results indicate that ultrasonic measurements of these parameters were useful methods to estimate gestational age in Korean black goat.