Effects of Plasmodium vinckei Hemozoin on the Production of Oxygen Radicals and Nitrogen Oxides in Murine Macrophages

Javier Prada Institut fur Tropenmedizin, Berlin, Germany

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Joachim Malinowski Institut fur Tropenmedizin, Berlin, Germany

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Simone Muller Institut fur Tropenmedizin, Berlin, Germany

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Ulrich Bienzle Institut fur Tropenmedizin, Berlin, Germany

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Peter G. Kremsner Institut fur Tropenmedizin, Berlin, Germany

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When murine peritoneal macrophages were loaded in vitro with Plasmodium vinckei hemozoin and stimulated with opsonized zymosan for 90 min or with lipopolysaccharide and/or murine interferon-gamma for 24 hr, significant decreases in the production of oxygen radicals and nitrogen oxides, respectively, could be detected by comparison with macrophages without hemozoin. Moreover, nonradioactive in situ hybridization and immunohistologic analysis in liver sections of P. vinckei-infected mice with more than 60% parasitemia showed that liver cells were still expressing considerable levels of inducible nitric oxide synthase in the late phase of murine malaria, but most of the liver macrophages presenting accumulation of malaria pigment were negative in this analysis. These results further indicate that malaria pigment accumulation may be responsible for toxicity and impairment of macrophage functions during murine malaria.

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