Thursday, December 08, 2011

Differential Gene Expression in Mice Infected with Distinct Toxoplasma Strains

Infect Immun. 2011 Dec 5. [Epub ahead of print]

Differential Gene Expression in Mice Infected with Distinct Toxoplasma Strains.

Hill RD, Gouffon JS, Saxton AM, Su C.

SourceDepartment of Microbiology.

Toxoplasma gondii is the causative agent of toxoplasmosis in human and animals. In mouse model, T. gondii strains can be divided into three groups, including the virulent, intermediately virulent and non-virulent. The clonal Type I, II and III T. gondii strains belong to these three groups respectively. To better understand the basis of virulence phenotypes, we investigated mouse gene expression responses to the infection of different T. gondii strains at day 5 post intraperitoneal inoculation with 500 tachyzoites. The transcriptomes of mouse peritoneal cells showed that 1927, 1573, and 1009 transcripts were altered more than 2 fold by Type I, II and III infections, respectively, and majority of altered transcripts were shared. Overall transcription patterns were similar in Type I and Type II infections and both had greater changes than that of Type III. Quantification of parasite burden in mouse spleens showed that Type I was 1000 times higher than Type II, and Type II was 20 times higher than Type III. Fluorescence activated cell sorting revealed that Type I and II infections had comparable macrophage populations and both were higher than Type III infection. In addition, Type I infection had higher percentage of neutrophils than that of Type II and III. Taken together, these results suggested that there is a common gene expression response to T. gondii infection in mice. This response is further modified by parasite strain specific factors that determine their distinct virulence phenotypes.

PMID:22144491[PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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