Disaccharidase Activity in the Small Intestine of Susceptible and Resistant Mice after Primary and Challenge Infections with Giardia muris

C. W. DanielsDepartments of Zoology and Immunology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

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M. BelosevicDepartments of Zoology and Immunology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

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The activities of four disaccharidases were examined in resistant (C57Bl/6) and susceptible (C3H/HeN) mice during the primary infection with Giardia muris and after challenge with either trophozoite extract or cysts. Significant decreases in lactase, sucrase, trehalase, and maltase activities in C57Bl/6 mice and lactase and sucrase activities in C3H/HeN mice in the anterior 25% of the small intestine were observed on day 10 after infection. The activities of maltase, sucrase, trehalase, and lactase in the jejunum of C3H/HeN mice were significantly reduced after challenge with trophozoite extract, when compared with the uninfected or infected, but not challenged animals. Decreases in enzyme activities of C3H/HeN mice were evident as early as 12 hours after challenge with the extract. The resistant C57Bl/6 mice showed little change in disaccharidase activity after challenge with trophozoite extract. On the other hand, challenge with cysts resulted in a few decreases in disaccharidase activities in both strains of mice: C57Bl/6 mice showed decreases in the duodenum, while disaccharidases of C3H/HeN mice had lower activity more posteriorly. Thus, challenge with parasite antigen results in a more severe disaccharidase deficiency in susceptible hosts when compared with resistant ones.

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