Chagasic cardiomyopathy is a major life-threatening complication of Trypanosoma cruzi infection in human beings. This study focuses on the hypertrophic and hyperplastic mechanisms underlying the structural changes of the heart during experimental infection. Proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) expression, transversal diameter, nuclear area, and number of nuclei per unit volume were determined in the ventricular myocytes of T. cruzi–infected Wistar rats. PCNA expression was enhanced throughout the inflamed myocardium and in the spared areas of the left ventricular wall and the septum. Myocyte width increased from 26 to 75% at the inflammation-free myocardium (P < 0.0001), whereas it decreased 25% at the inflamed left ventricular wall areas (P < 0.001). Nuclear size increased in the inflammation-free myocardium of the left ventricle and the septum (>10–36%, P < 0.01 and >0.2–32%, P < 0.03, respectively) and decreased at the inflamed areas of the left ventricular wall (10–22%, P < 0.02) with respect to the controls. The number of nuclei per unit volume decreased at the inflamed myocardium regardless of topographical location (36–65%) with respect to the controls (P < 0.0001) and in the inflammation-free myocardium of the right ventricle and the septum (<21–37%, P < 0.002 and <8–39%, P < 0.002, respectively). These results show that the heart responds to T. cruzi infection with DNA repair and cell multiplication in the inflamed sites and with hypertrophy of the unaffected myocardium.
CARDIAC MYOCYTE HYPERTROPHY AND PROLIFERATING CELL NUCLEAR ANTIGEN EXPRESSION IN WISTAR RATS INFECTED WITH TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI
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María Rosa Arnaiz, Laura Edith Fichera, Miriam Postan; CARDIAC MYOCYTE HYPERTROPHY AND PROLIFERATING CELL NUCLEAR ANTIGEN EXPRESSION IN WISTAR RATS INFECTED WITH TRYPANOSOMA CRUZI. J Parasitol 1 October 2002; 88 (5): 919–925. doi: https://doi.org/10.1645/0022-3395(2002)088[0919:CMHAPC]2.0.CO;2
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