Document Detail

Major histocompatibility complex diversity influences parasite resistance and innate immunity in sticklebacks.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  15058398     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Proteins of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) play a central role in the presentation of antigens to the adaptive immune system. The MHC also influences the odour-based choice of mates in humans and several animal taxa. It has recently been shown that female three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus) aim at a moderately high MHC diversity in their offspring when choosing a mate. Do they optimize the immune systems of their offspring? Using three-spined sticklebacks that varied in their individual numbers of MHC class IIB molecules, we tested, experimentally, whether allelic diversity at the MHC influences parasite resistance and immune parameters. We found that sticklebacks with low MHC diversity suffered more from parasite infection after experimental exposure to Schistocephalus solidus tapeworms and Glugea anomala microsporidians. They also showed the highest proportion of granulocytes and the strongest respiratory burst reaction, which are correlates of innate immunity. This indicates a strong activity of the innate immune system after challenge by parasites when MHC diversity is suboptimal. Individuals with very high allelic diversity at the MHC seemed inferior to those with moderately high diversity. Such a pattern is consistent with theoretical expectations of an optimal balance between the number of recognizable antigens and self-tolerance.
Joachim Kurtz; Martin Kalbe; Peter B Aeschlimann; Michael A Häberli; K Mathias Wegner; Thorsten B H Reusch; Manfred Milinski
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Proceedings. Biological sciences / The Royal Society     Volume:  271     ISSN:  0962-8452     ISO Abbreviation:  Proc. Biol. Sci.     Publication Date:  2004 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2004-04-02     Completed Date:  2004-04-30     Revised Date:  2009-11-18    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101245157     Medline TA:  Proc Biol Sci     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  197-204     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute of Limnology, August-Thienemann-Strasse 2, 24306 Plön, Germany.
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MeSH Terms
Genetic Variation*
Granulocytes / immunology
Host-Parasite Interactions
Immunity, Innate / genetics*
Major Histocompatibility Complex / genetics*
Parasites / immunology*
Respiratory Burst
Sexual Behavior, Animal*
Smegmamorpha / genetics,  immunology,  parasitology*

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