African swine fever: Expression of interleukin-1 alpha and tumour necrosis factor-alpha by pulmonary intravascular macrophages

To determine. in the acute form of African swine fever (ASF), the relationship between the appearance of pulmonary oedema and viral replication and expression of cytokines by pulmonary intravascular macrophages (PIMs), 14 pigs were inoculated intramuscularly with ASF virus (strain Espana' 70) and killed in pairs on days 1-7 post-inoculation. Samples of lung were examined immunohistochemically and ultrastructurally. The immunohistochemical study was carried out with antibodies against interleukin-1 alpha IL-1alpha, tumour necrosis factor-alpha TNF-alpha), viral antigen of ASF (Vp73) and a myeloid marker (SWC3). Viral replication was observed mainly in PIMs, which at the same time showed intense activation. accompanied by the expression of IL-1alpha and TNF-alpha. The occurrence of interstitial oedema, neutrophil sequestration and fibrin microthrombi in septal capillaries coincided with high degrees of cytokine expression by infected PIMs. Alveolar macrophages did not show a significant change in cytokine expression as a result of ASF infection, and viral replication was detected in only a low percentage of these cells. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd.

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