Volume 46, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The course of infection was studied in an experimental model, using the offspring of mice that were chronically infected with . When infected two months after birth, a higher mortality rate in heavily parasitized mice occurred in these offspring than in controls born to uninfected mothers. The harmful maternal influence reached a maximum when offspring were exposed both to prenatal (placental) and postnatal (lactating) influences. It was a reversible phenomenon that led to a -specific failure of the offspring to control the acute phase of the infection. Such features are suggestive of a maternally-induced impairment of the immune response of the offspring.


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