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Thalidomide enhances both primary and secondary host resistances to Listeria monocytogenes infection by a neutrophil-related mechanism in female B6C3F1 mice

Guo TL, Chi RP, Karrow NA, Zhang LX, Pruett SB, Germolec DR, White KL Jr.
Toxicol Appl Pharmacol (2005) DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.taap.2005.04.014 PMID: 15921716



Previously, we have reported that thalidomide can modulate the immune responses in female B6C3F1 mice. Furthermore, thalidomide immunomodulation increased primary host resistance to intravenously infected Listeria monocytogenes. The present study was intended to evaluate the mechanisms underlying the enhanced host resistance to L. monocytogenes by focusing on the neutrophils. Female B6C3F1 mice were treated intraperitoneally with thalidomide (100 mg/kg) for 15 days. Exposure to thalidomide increased the numbers of neutrophils in the spleens and livers of L. monocytogenes-infected mice when compared to the L. monocytogenes-infected control mice. Additionally, the percentage of neutrophils was also significantly increased after Thd treatment in L. monocytogenes-infected mice. Further studies using antibodies to deplete corresponding cells indicated that thalidomide-mediated increase in primary host resistance (both the moribundity and colony counts in the liver and spleen) to L. monocytogenes infection was due to its effect on neutrophils but not CD8+ T cells or NK cells. Finally, Thd exposure also increased host resistance to secondary host resistance to L. monocytogenes infection, and depletion of neutrophils abolished the protective effect. In conclusion, thalidomide enhanced host resistance to both primary and secondary L. monocytogenes infections by a neutrophil-related mechanism in female B6C3F1 mice.