Biochemical and immunological properties of related small ruminant trophoblast interferons

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The objectives of this study were 1) to evaluate the biochemical and immunological properties of caprine interferon tau (cIFNγ), 2) to determine if intrauterine injection of recombinant ovine interferon tau (roIFNγ) extends CL life span in goats, and 3) to evaluate potential side effects of intramuscular (im) administration roIFNγ. Caprine IFNγ was purified, and its effects on lymphocyte proliferation were evaluated. Incorporation of 3H- thymidine into newly synthesized DNA was suppressed (P<0.05) by clFNγ. Spanish goats were also fitted with bilateral uterine catheters at Day 7 or 8 postestrus. The goats received twice-daily intrauterine injections of 100 μg roIFNγ (n = 4) or caprine serum proteins (n = 4) from Days 14 to 18 postestrus. Intrauterine injection of roIFNγ extended CL life span compared with that of control goats (26.4 ± 1.7 vs 17.8 ± 1.9 d, respectively; P<0.01). Potential side effects of intramuscular injections of roIFNγ were also evaluated. Goats received 0, 1, 2 or 4 mg of roIFNγ on Days 10, 13, 16 or 19 of the estrous cycle. Treatment of goats with roIFN resulted in hyperthermia (P<0.01), with rectal temperatures of 40.5δ C recorded after 4 h and returning to normal (38.5δ C) after 24 h. Concomitant with the increase in rectal temperatures was a decrease (P<0.01) in plasma progesterone concentrations. Therefore, the tau interferons of goats and sheep have similar biological properties and roIFNγ has side effects associated with other classes of interferons.

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