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Cyclophosphamide effect on coccidioidomycosis in the rat

Cyclophosphamide effect on coccidioidomycosis in the rat

Revista do Instituto de Medicina Tropical de Sao Paulo 31(6): 423-429

Coccidioidomycosis is a systemic mycosis, endemic in arid areas of the American continent. The rat was employed as an experimental host, since it had been shown to reproduce human lesions and present a chronic course of disease with granulomas mainly restricted to lungs. Given the influence of immunosuppressive therapy on the clinical course of human coccidioidomycosis, we studied the effect of cyclophosphamide (CY) in the experimental rat model. Accordingly, animals were inoculated with 400 Coccidioides immitis arthroconidia of the Acosta strain, by intracardiacal route. As single CY doses failed to alter the course of disease, three schedules were used: A) 4 daily doses of 20 mg/kg each, prior to C. immitis inoculation; B) 4 similar daily doses after infection; and C); 6 doses of 20 mg/kg each, given from day +1 to +4, then on days +8 and +9, post infection (pi), taking day 0 as the time of fungal inoculation. The first two schedules inhibited antibody formation up to day 28 pi, without modifying cellular response to coccidioidin as measured by foodpad swelling. Initially, there was greater fungal spread than in controls receiving C. immitis alone, which proved self-limiting in the latter. In contrast, schedule C led to 55% mortality, with both humoral and cellular response abrogation, accompanied by extensive C. immitis dissemination. Histology disclosed significant alterations, such as the persistence of primary infection sporangia, corresponding to the acute stage of coccidioidomycosis in the absence of granuloma development. Therefore, the observed depression in cellular immunity seems responsible for the lack of inflammatory reaction capable of restricting sporangia proliferation in tissues which, in turn, enhances pathogen spread and mortality rate.

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Accession: 001790957

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PMID: 2640515

DOI: 10.1590/s0036-46651989000600009

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