Authors' Affiliations

Nicholas Britt, Madeleine Miller, Dr. Donald B. Hoover1, and Dr. John B. Schweitzer2 1 Department of Biomedical Sciences and 2 Department of Pathology, College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN.

Location

Ballroom

Start Date

4-5-2018 8:00 AM

End Date

4-5-2018 12:00 PM

Poster Number

45

Name of Project's Faculty Sponsor

Donald B. Hoover

Faculty Sponsor's Department

Biomedical Sciences

Type

Poster: Competitive

Classification of First Author

Undergraduate Student

Project's Category

Biomedical and Health Sciences

Abstract Text

The nervous system and immune system contact one another through two-way communication in order to establish and preserve homeostasis. The sympathetic neurotransmitter norepinephrine has an impact on how the immune system responds by affecting regional blood flow and activation of adrenergic receptors on leukocytes. Former studies showed that immune cells are capable of releasing nerve growth factor allowing for the establishment and continuation of sympathetic nerves in targeted tissues. From this gathered information, it was hypothesized that sympathetic nerves would prove to be less frequent in spleens from the immunodeficient R2G2 mouse strain (Envigo) when compared to 129P3/J (129) and C57BL/6 (C57) strains. R2G2 mice are an immunodeficient strain that lacks functional T, B, and natural killer cells. Ten to eleven week aged-matched male mice were measured by body weight, spleen weight, and temperature. Spleens were cut and fixed for histological investigation. Sympathetic nerves were labeled by immunostaining tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). Hematoxylin & eosin (H&E) was used to stain spleen sections in order to evaluate cytoarchitecture. Von Willebrand factor (VWF) was used to immunostain for megakaryocytes. R2G2 mice showed slightly higher temperatures and body weights but yielded a significantly smaller spleen weight (R2G2, 38.20 ± 1.48; 129, 65.08 ± 11.71; C57, 81.33 ± 8.38; P< 0.0001, ANOVA). TH stain revealed sympathetic innervation in all strains but location and morphology differed in R2G2 mice compared to controls. Control spleens had nerves which entered white pulp regions of the spleen and were closely related to leukocytes. Fiber profiles in the controls were filamentous with small acute bends. R2G2 differed by having (TH+) nerve fibers more associated with arteries and less localized in the surrounding parenchyma. The fibers were abnormally swollen and held a more granular shape instead of a filamentous shape. The H&E stain showed clear red and white pulp zones in the control spleens with 129 showing more distinct germinal centers than C57. R2G2 H&E sections showed cytoarchitecture with indistinct pulp areas. VWF staining revealed R2G2 mice had an abundant amount of megakaryocytes versus control mice megakaryocyte counts (R2G2, 11.28 ± 3.87 per 20X field; 129, 1.73 ± 0.70; C57, 1.42 ± 0.13; P< 0.0001, ANOVA) and extramedullary hematopoiesis was highly prominent. This evidence supports that leukocytes secrete neurotrophic factors or are vital to establishing normal growth of TH+ nerves toward the white pulp. Leukocytes may not be required for sympathetic innervation of blood vessels in the spleen, however, lack of leukocytes shows TH+ nerve fibers with abnormal morphology in severely immune threatened mice.

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Apr 5th, 8:00 AM Apr 5th, 12:00 PM

IMMUNODEFICIENT R2G2 MOUSE STRAIN YIELDS SPLEENS WITH UNUSUAL CYTOARCHITECTURE AND SYMPATHETIC INNERVATION

Ballroom

The nervous system and immune system contact one another through two-way communication in order to establish and preserve homeostasis. The sympathetic neurotransmitter norepinephrine has an impact on how the immune system responds by affecting regional blood flow and activation of adrenergic receptors on leukocytes. Former studies showed that immune cells are capable of releasing nerve growth factor allowing for the establishment and continuation of sympathetic nerves in targeted tissues. From this gathered information, it was hypothesized that sympathetic nerves would prove to be less frequent in spleens from the immunodeficient R2G2 mouse strain (Envigo) when compared to 129P3/J (129) and C57BL/6 (C57) strains. R2G2 mice are an immunodeficient strain that lacks functional T, B, and natural killer cells. Ten to eleven week aged-matched male mice were measured by body weight, spleen weight, and temperature. Spleens were cut and fixed for histological investigation. Sympathetic nerves were labeled by immunostaining tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). Hematoxylin & eosin (H&E) was used to stain spleen sections in order to evaluate cytoarchitecture. Von Willebrand factor (VWF) was used to immunostain for megakaryocytes. R2G2 mice showed slightly higher temperatures and body weights but yielded a significantly smaller spleen weight (R2G2, 38.20 ± 1.48; 129, 65.08 ± 11.71; C57, 81.33 ± 8.38; P< 0.0001, ANOVA). TH stain revealed sympathetic innervation in all strains but location and morphology differed in R2G2 mice compared to controls. Control spleens had nerves which entered white pulp regions of the spleen and were closely related to leukocytes. Fiber profiles in the controls were filamentous with small acute bends. R2G2 differed by having (TH+) nerve fibers more associated with arteries and less localized in the surrounding parenchyma. The fibers were abnormally swollen and held a more granular shape instead of a filamentous shape. The H&E stain showed clear red and white pulp zones in the control spleens with 129 showing more distinct germinal centers than C57. R2G2 H&E sections showed cytoarchitecture with indistinct pulp areas. VWF staining revealed R2G2 mice had an abundant amount of megakaryocytes versus control mice megakaryocyte counts (R2G2, 11.28 ± 3.87 per 20X field; 129, 1.73 ± 0.70; C57, 1.42 ± 0.13; P< 0.0001, ANOVA) and extramedullary hematopoiesis was highly prominent. This evidence supports that leukocytes secrete neurotrophic factors or are vital to establishing normal growth of TH+ nerves toward the white pulp. Leukocytes may not be required for sympathetic innervation of blood vessels in the spleen, however, lack of leukocytes shows TH+ nerve fibers with abnormal morphology in severely immune threatened mice.