B-cell activation in trypanosome-infected Boran cattle
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Analysis of serum antibody responses in cattle experimentally infected with Trypanosoma congolense suggested that antibody responses of trypanosusceptible Boran cattle are less efficient in isotype switching and affinity maturation than those of trypanotolerant N'Dama cattle. High levels of polyspecific IgM are produced by Boran cattle while N'Dama cattle have higher titres of IgG specific for certain trypanosome antigens. Further characterization of these differences required determination of the frequency and phenotype of antibody secreting cells (ASC), as well as the specificity of the antibody and the isotype secreted in response to infection. A method was therefore developed to maintain bovine B cells in culture and stimulate them to differentiate into ASC. B cells were examined for the expression of the transferrin receptor and the CD5 antigen using fluorescence activated cell sorter (FACS) analysis and the number of ASC was determined using an ELISpot assay. We compared B-cell activation and the frequency of ASC between six Trypanosoma congolense-infected cattle and three uninfected controls. Peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL) were analysed before and after in vitro culture for three and six days with combinations of lipopolysaccharide (LPS), pokeweed mitogen (PWM) and recombinant bovine interleukin-2 (rboIL 2). Splenic lymphocytes from T. congolense-infected cattle were compared with PBL from the same animals.
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