PMID: 9089571Feb 1, 1997Paper

Macrophage prostaglandin production contributes to the age-associated decrease in T cell function which is reversed by the dietary antioxidant vitamin E

Mechanisms of Ageing and Development
Alison BeharkaSimin Nikbin Meydani


The aging process is associated with a decline in T cell-mediated immunity, including decreased interleukin (IL)-2 production and mitogen-induced T cell proliferation. Because macrophages (M phi) from old mice have higher production of prostaglandin (PG) E2 than young mice, and PGE2 has been shown to suppress T cell-mediated function, we hypothesized that increased production of PGE2 would contribute to decreased T cell function with aging and that decrease in PGE2 production by dietary antioxidants would enhance T cell-mediated function. Experiments were conducted in which combinations of purified M phi and T cells (> 95% pure) from young or old C57BL/6N1A mice were cultured together. Co-cultures containing T cells and M phi from old mice had reduced ConA-stimulated proliferation and IL-2 secretion than those consisting of T cells and M phi from young mice. Addition of M phi from old mice suppressed proliferation and IL-2 secretion by T cells from young mice. Likewise, T cells from old mice secreted more IL-2 when cultured with M phi from young mice compared to those cultured with M phi from old mice. Addition of PGE2, at concentrations produced by old M phi, decreased proliferation and IL-2 production by young but not old T c...Continue Reading


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