, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 11–19 | Cite as

Cellular and molecular aspects of thymus dependent antibody production in aged C3H/HeBr mice

  • S. L. F. Dupere
  • B. J. Kolodziej


An age related decline in anti-sheep erythrocyte antibody produced by lymphoid cells in splenic tissue of male C3H/HeBr mice was observed for both IgM and IgG production. The total number of lymphocytes per gram of splenic tissue was diminished, but there was no observed decrease in the spleen size with age. Analyses for enhanced suppressor cell activity as is found in tumor bearing mice of this strain revealed no enhanced suppressor activity in non-tumor bearing aged mice. Analyses of total cellular RNA from old and young mouse splenic lymphocytes revealed 8.5% less total RNA in aged mouse cells. Of the total RNA content, the percent of functional messenger RNA (poly(A)-RNA) declined 19.3% in the aged mouse cells. Isolation of the poly(A) tailed messenger RNA followed by cell-free translation of the message using a reticulocyte lysate system demonstrated that the poly(A)-RNA from young and aged mouse splenic lyphocytes directed protein synthesis to the same extent, indicating that although there was less poly(A)-RNA in the aged mouse cells, the activity of the poly(A)-RNA was relatively equivalent to that of young mouse cells. Translated proteins from poly(A)-RNA directed synthesis analyzed by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis suggested a significant decline in immunoglobulin light and heavy chain message in the aged mouse lymphocytes of B cell enriched as well as unfractionated populations. This study suggested that age related declining humoral immunity in C3H/HeBr mice may have resulted from a defect in the B cell or helper T cell compartments, but was not the result of enhanced suppressor activity. This finding was substantiated by an observed decrease in poly(A)-RNA levels in aged mouse lymphoid cells as well as a suggested loss of intrinsic message for antibody synthesis.


Aged Mouse Young Mouse Spleen Size Splenic Lymphocyte Splenic Tissue 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Price, G. B., and Makinodan, T.: Immunological deficiencies in senescence, I. Characterization of intrinsic deficiencies. J. Immunol., 108:403–412, 1972.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Roder, J. C., Duwe, A. K., Bell, D. A., and Singhal, S. K.: Immunological senescence. I. The role of suppressor cells. Immunology, 35:837–847, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Singhal, S. K., Roder, J. C., and Duwe, A. K.: Suppressor cells in immunosenescence. Fed. Proc., 37: 1245–1252, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Svedersky, L. P., Dodd, M. C., and Minton, J. P.: Immune suppression by cultured lymphocyte supernates of tumor bearing hosts. J. Surg. Oncology, 12:343–347, 1979.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Callard, R. E., and Basten, A.: Immune function in aged mice. III. Loss of T cell and B cell function in thymus-dependent antibody responses. Eur. J. Immunol., 8:552–558, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Friedman, D., and Globerson, A.: Immune reactivity during aging. I. T-helper dependent and independent antibody responses to different antigens in vivo and in vitro. Mech. Ageing and Devel., 7:289–298, 1978.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Friedman, D., and Globerson, A.: Immune reactivity during aging. III. Analysis of the cellular mechanisms involved in the deficient antibody response in old mice. Mech. Ageing and Devei., 7:299–307, 1978.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Primi, D., Hammarstrom, L., and Smith, C. IE.: Genetic control of lymphocyte suppression. I. Lack of suppression in aged mice is due to a B cell defect. J. Immunol., 121:2241–2243, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Weigle, W. O., and Parks, D. E.: Effect of aging on immune and tolerant states. Fed. Proc., 37: 1253–1257, 1978.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Chaconas, G., and Finch, C. E.: The effect of aging on RNA/DNA ratios in brain regions of the C57BL/6J male mouse. J. Neurochem., 21:1469–1473, 1973.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Mainwaring, W. I. P.: Changes in the ribonucleic acid metabolism of aging mouse tissues with particular reference to the prostate gland. Biochem. J., 110:79–86, 1968.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Maker, H. S., Lehrer, G. M., and Weiss, C.: DNA content of mouse cerebellar layers. Brain Res., 50: 226–229, 1973.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Prashad, N., and Cutler, R. G.: Quantitative studies of satellite DNA in different tissues of mice as a function of age. Gerontologist, 12:26–32, 1972.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Britton, V. J., Sherman, F. G., and Florini, J. B.: Effect of age on RNA synthesis by nuclei and soluble RNA poiymerases from liver and muscle of C57BL/6J mice. J. Gerontol., 27: 188–192, 1972.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Burnotte, R. E., Gobert, J. G., and Temmerman, J. J.: Piracetan (2-pyrolidinone acetamide) induced modifications of the brain polyribosome pattern in aging rats. Biochem. Pharmacol., 22:811–814, 1973.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    MacKinnon, P. C., Simpson, R. A., and MacLennan, C.: in vivo and in vitro techniques used in the study of RNA synthesis in the brains of rats and mice at various ages from birth to senility. J. Anatomy, 104: 351–360, 1969.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Mueller, W. E. G., Zahn, R. K., Schroeder, C. H., and Arendes, J.: Age dependent enzymatic poly(A) metabolism in quail oviduct. Gerontology, 25:61–68, 1979.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Sheiness, D., and Darnell, J. E.: Polyadenylic acid segment in mRNA becomes shorter with age. Nature new Biol., 241:265–268, 1973.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Hayflick, L.: The limited in vitro lifetime of human diploid cell strains. Exp. Cell Res., 37: 614–636, 1965.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Russell, E. S.: Lifespan and aging patterns, in Biology of the Laboratory Mouse, edited by Green, E. L., New York, McGraw-Hill Press, 1966, pp. 511–519.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Jerne, N. K., Nordin, A. A., and Henry, C.: The agar plaque technique for recognizing antibody-producing cells, in Cell Bound Antibodies, edited by Amos, B., and Korprowski, H., Philadelphia, Wistar Institute Press, 1963, pp. 109–119.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Yamada, H., and Yamada, A.: Antibody formation against 2,4-dinitrophenyl-hapten at the cellular level. Hemolytic plaque in gel assay for lymphoid cells producing anti-2,4-dinitrophenyl-hapten. J. Immunol., 103:357–363, 1969.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Julius, M. H., Simpson, E., and Herzenberg, L. A.: A rapid method for the isolation of functional thymus-derived murine lymphocytes. Eur. J. Immunol., 3:645–649, 1973.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Mack, B., and Vassalli, P.: Template activity of RNA from antibody producing tissues. Science, 150: 622–626, 1965.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Burton, K.: A study of the conditions and mechanism of the diphenylamine reaction for the colorimetric estimation of deoxyribonucleic acid. Biochem. J., 62:315–323, 1956.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Lowry, O. H., Rosebrough, N. J., Farr, A. L., and Randall, R. J.: Protein measurement with Folin Phenol Reagent. J. Biol. Chem., 193:265–268, 1951.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Bantle, J. A., Maxwell, I. H., and Hahn, W. E.: Specificity of oligo(dT)-cellulose chromatography in the isolation of polyadenylated RNA. Anal. Biochem., 72:413–427, 1976.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Bishop, J. O., Rosbash, M., and Evans, D.: Polynucleotide sequences in eukaryotic DNA and RNA that form ribonuclease-resistant complexes with polyuridylic acid. J. Mol. Biol., 85:75–86, 1974.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Pelham, H. R. B., and Jackson, R. J.: An efficient mRNA-dependent translation system from reticulocyte lysates. Eur. J. Biochem., 67:247–256, 1976.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© American Aging Association, Inc. 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. L. F. Dupere
    • 1
  • B. J. Kolodziej
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MicrobiologyOhio State UniversityColumbus

Personalised recommendations