Production of nitric oxide, interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor α from mouse peritoneal macrophages in response to Bacillus anthracis antigens

  • Yoo, Han-sang (Department of Infectious Disease, College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Kim, Jae-wook (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service) ;
  • Cho, Yun-sang (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service)
  • Received : 1998.11.20
  • Published : 1999.04.01


Anthrax caused by Bacillus anthracis is one of the most important zoonotic diseases. The bacterium produces several virulence factors. Of the factors, protective antigen (PA) of tripatite toxin has been identified as a central component in the pathogenesis of anthrax. However, precise roles of PA and other cellular components in the reaction with the target cells remain to be elucidated, especially in the initial stage of the disease. Three B anthracis antigens were prepared for investigation; PA, sonicated cellular antigens (S-Ag) and formalin-inactivaed whole cell antigens (W-Ag). PA was purified from culture supernatant of the bacterium using FPLC system with MonoQ. S-Ag and W-Ag were prepared by sonication and formalin inactivation of the cultured cells, respectively. Purity of the antigens was confirmed by SDS-PAGE and Western blot analysis. The roles of these antigens in the production of inflammatory mediators such as NO, IL-6 and $TNF{\alpha}$ from mouse peritoneal macrophages were investigated. PA alone did not induce the production of the inflammatory mediators while the other antigens, S-Ag and W-Ag, did in a dose and time dependent manner. These results suggested that in addition to major virulence factors, other cellular antigens are also involved in the initial stage of the disease by the induction of inflammatory mediators.


Supported by : SNU, Rural Development Administration