PMID: 3892433May 1, 1985

Ultrastructural studies of the killing of schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni by activated macrophages in vitro

Parasite Immunology
D J McLaren, S L James


Immunologically activated murine macrophages have been shown elsewhere to kill skin stage schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni in vitro, in a manner analogous to the extracellular killing of tumour cell targets. In this study, the kinetics of the interaction between activated macrophages and larval targets and the resultant ultrastructural changes in parasite morphology that culminated in death have been analysed in detail. Unlike granulocyte-mediated schistosomular killing, macrophage-mediated cytotoxicity did not appear to be directed against the surface tissues of the parasite. Macrophages adhered only transiently following initiation of the cultures, yet changes in the subtegumental mitochondria and muscle cells of the larva were detected within the first hour of incubation. Progressive internal disorganisation followed rapidly, but the tegument and tegumental outer membrane remained intact, to form a 'shell' that maintained the general shape of the parasite. Such changes were recognised irrespective of whether the effector cell population comprised peritoneal macrophages activated by lymphokine treatment in vitro, or by infection with Mycobacterium bovis (strain BCG), or S. mansoni in vivo. That macrophages rather than con...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Immunologic Tumoricidal Activities
Macrophage Activation
Mice, Inbred CBA
Electron Microscopy
Mycobacterium bovis
Schistosoma mansoni

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