CpG-Induced Stimulation of Cytokine Expression by Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells of Foals and Their Dams Academic Article uri icon


  • A relative immunodeficiency of young foals is considered to account for the increased susceptibility of foals to infectious diseases, including pneumonia caused by Rhodococcus equi. In this report, peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from healthy foals at 14 and 56 days of age, or from their dams, were incubated with three stimulatory and one nonstimulatory (control) synthetic cytosine-phosphate-guanosine oligodeoxynucleotides (CpG-ODNs), and mRNA expression of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interferon gamma (IFN-γ), interleukin (IL) -6, IL-8, IL12-p35, and IL-12p40 were determined. Results indicated that synthetic CpG-ODNs can induce strong, rapid cytokine responses in healthy foals and adult horses. B-class CpG-ODNs 2135 and 2142 induced greater messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of IFN-γ, IL-6, and IL-12p40 than the C-class CpG-ODN 2395 in foal PBMCs. In foals, B-class CpG-ODNs induced IFN-γ, IL-6, and IL-12P40 mRNA expression that was similar to or higher in magnitude than that observed in adult horses. These observations indicate that CpG-ODNs might be useful as immunomodulators or as potential adjuvants for vaccines to aid in preventing R. equi pneumonia and other bacterial diseases of foals. © 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

author list (cited authors)

  • Liu, T., Nerren, J., Murrell, J., Juillard, V., Garch, H. E., Martens, R., & Cohen, N.

citation count

  • 3

publication date

  • July 2008