Cytokine mRNA profiling and the proliferative response of bovine peripheral blood mononuclear cells to Mycoplasma bovis.

Research paper by Satoshi S Gondaira, Hidetoshi H Higuchi, Hidetomo H Iwano, Keiichi K Nakajima, Kazuhiro K Kawai, Shuhei S Hashiguchi, Satoru S Konnai, Hajime H Nagahata

Indexed on: 25 Mar '15Published on: 25 Mar '15Published in: Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology


Mycoplasma bovis is known as a significant pathogen and cause of large economic losses in beef and dairy calves worldwide. Numerous factors appear to play an important role in the development of disease during infection with M. bovis, e.g., inhibition of immune cell proliferation and induction of lymphocyte apoptosis. However, the mechanisms involved in M. bovis infections have not been explored and remain incompletely understood. We investigated the major cytokine mRNA expression in bovine PBMC stimulated with M. bovis, for comparison, Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli, which are the representative mastitis-causing pathogens. Here we demonstrated that live M. bovis significantly induced tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin 12p40 (IL-12), and interferon gamma (IFN-γ) mRNA expression in bovine peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) at a multiplicity of infection (MOI) of 1000 but not at an MOI of 10 and 100. Live M. bovis at MOIs of 1, 10, and 100 induced significant bovine PBMC proliferative responses compared with unstimulated bovine PBMC. Furthermore, we showed that the cultural supernatant of M. bovis induced a significant increase in TNF-α, IL-6, and IL-10 mRNA expression in bovine PBMC. Our results suggest that M. bovis weakly affects the cellular integrity of bovine PBMC and induces clear proliferative responses and associated cytokine production in them. However, large numbers of live M. bovis are required to induce an immune response in bovine PBMC.