Volume 17, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The host-parasite relation in albino rats infected with the filarial parasite, , was investigated with particular reference to the nature of acquired resistance to the infection.

In a rat with latent infection, when the microfilariae ceased to appear in the peripheral blood, transplantation of live adult worms into the abdominal cavity led to microfilaremia. Passive immunization of infected rats with serum from rabbits immunized with adult homogenates or from rats with latent infection containing circulating antibodies did not significantly reduce the microfilaremia. Transplantation of active adult worms into the thoracic cavity of normal rats passively immunized with rabbit antiserum or serum from rats with latent infection resulted in the appearance of microfilaremia. These data reveal that humoral antibodies may not have a significant role in the production of latency to infection.

Transplantation of adult worms into the thoracic cavity of latent rats, however, did not lead to microfilaremia. Similar results were obtained when heparinized blood or saline washings of the pleura containing microfilariae were injected into the thoracic cavity of rats with latent infection. These results suggest that a local tissue response, which may be immunologic in nature, is developed in the thorax owing to the constant presence of the worms and to the migration of microfilariae from the thoracic area during active infection, which might have resulted in blockage of the passage.


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