This study investigated the influence of TLR (toll-like receptor)4, TLR2, and MyD88 in Toxoplasma gondii–infected wild-type (WT) mice and TLR4-, TLR2-, and MyD88-deficient mice. Ninety-five percent of MyD88-deficient mice died 10–16 days after intraperitoneal infection with 100 cysts of T. gondii Fukaya strain, whereas 95–100% of TLR4- and TLR2-deficient mice and WT C57BL/6 (B6) mice survived for more than 7 wk after T. gondii infection. The distribution of T. gondii in various organs of TLR4-, TLR2-, and MyD88-deficient mice and WT B6 mice was assessed 2 wk after T. gondii intraperitoneal infection using quantitative competitive polymerase chain reaction. In MyD88-deficient mice, high levels of T. gondii load were observed in the brain, tongue, heart, lungs, spleen, liver, mesenteric lymph node, and kidneys after infection. The T. gondii load was significantly increased in the lungs in both TLR4- and TLR2-deficient mice compared with WT B6 mice. High levels of anti–mouse heat shock protein (mHSP)70 autoantibody and anti-T. gondii HSP70 antibody production were detected in the sera from MyD88-deficient mice.

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