Dendritic cells treated by Trichinella spiralis muscle larval excretory/secretory products alleviate TNBS-induced colitis in mice

Int Immunopharmacol. 2019 May;70:378-386. doi: 10.1016/j.intimp.2019.02.028. Epub 2019 Mar 8.


Background: Therapeutic potential of helminth have been shown to have a protective effect on immune-mediated diseases such as Crohn's disease (CD), which is associated with increased production of T helper cell type 1. However, helminth therapy is unacceptable to patients due to side-effects and the fear of parasites. As helminths regulate the cellular immune responses through innate cells such as dendritic cells (DCs), cellular immunotherapy has been considered a therapeutic option to treat CD.

Methods: Bone marrow-dendritic cells were generated, enriched and treated with Trichinella spiralis muscle larval excretory/secretory products (Ts-MLES). DCs maturation was measured by flow cytometry and cytokine production of DCs were measured by ELISA. Colitis was generated by intrarectal administration of 2,4,6-trinitrobenzene sulfonic acid (TNBS) solution. For adoptive transfer, Ts-MLES treated-DCs injected intravenously 24 h prior to TNBS challenge. Disease activity index (DAI) including weight loss, diarrhea, and bloody stool were measured. Colon segments were stained with hematoxylin and eosin (H.E.) and periodic acid schiff (PAS) staining for histological damage scoring. The relative mRNA expression of cytokines in colon was analyzed by RT-PCR. Cytokine production in colon was measured by ELISA. Splenocytes were separated and cytokine profiles including Th1 (IFN-γ), Th2 (IL-4, IL-13), and Treg subsets (IL-10, TGF-β) were analyzed by flow cytometry.

Results: Ts-MLES regulated the maturation and cytokine production of DCs. Ts-MLES -DC ameliorated the severity of the TNBS-induced colitis. In the colon and the spleen, Ts-MLES-DC decreased IFN-γ (Th1) significantly and increased Th2 (IL-4, IL-13)- and Treg (IL-10, TGF-β)- related cytokines.

Conclusions: Ts-MLES-DC ameliorated the severity of the TNBS-induced colitis through decreasing IFN-γ. Ts-MLES-DC skewed the Th1-mediated response toward the Th2 type and regulatory T cell response.

Keywords: Colitis; Dendritic cells; Muscle larvae excretory/secretory products; TNBS; Th2 response; Treg; Trichinella spiralis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigens, Helminth / metabolism*
  • Colitis / chemically induced
  • Colitis / therapy*
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Dendritic Cells / immunology*
  • Dendritic Cells / transplantation
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Helminth Proteins / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunotherapy / methods*
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / therapy*
  • Lymphocyte Activation
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory / immunology*
  • Th2 Cells / immunology*
  • Therapy with Helminths
  • Trichinella spiralis / physiology*
  • Trinitrobenzenesulfonic Acid


  • Antigens, Helminth
  • Cytokines
  • Helminth Proteins
  • excretory-secretory antigen, Trichinella
  • Trinitrobenzenesulfonic Acid