A diet supplemented with thiolic anti-oxidants improves leucocyte function in two strains of prematurely ageing mice.
Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 2002 Nov;29(11):1009-14. PMID: 12366393
Department of Animal Physiology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain.
1. According to previous studies, Swiss mice of the same age showed striking interindividual differences in behaviour when exposed to a T-maze test, with a slow performance being linked to an impaired immune function, hyperemotional response to stress and a shorter life span compared with mice that quickly explore the maze. These facts led us to propose the slow mice as a model of prematurely ageing mice (PAM). 2. In the present study, we investigated whether this prematurely ageing model could be found in other strains of mice, such as BALB/c mice, by analysing several lymphocytes functions, such as adherence, chemotaxis, proliferative response to the mitogen concanavalin A (Con A), interleukin (IL)-2 release and natural killer (NK) activity. In addition, we tested the probable beneficial effects on these functions of dietary supplementation with thioproline (TP) plus N-acetylcysteine (NAC; 0.1% w/w of each anti-oxidant) in female Swiss and BALB/c mice. 3. Our model of premature ageing, previously reported in Swiss mice, has also been reproduced in the inbred BALB/c mouse strain, in which PAM showing an immunosenescence in several lymphocyte functions, such as lower chemotaxis, proliferative response to Con A, IL-2 release and NK activity, as well as higher adherence, were observed. A short-term (5 week) ingestion of TP + NAC by female Swiss and BALB/c mice improved leucocyte function, increasing chemotaxis, the proliferative response to Con A, IL-2 release and NK activity and decreasing the adherence of lymphocytes. These effects are greatest in cells from PAM of both strains. 4. In conclusion, our model of premature ageing has been reproduced in an inbred strain. In addition, the ingestion of a diet supplemented with two thiolic anti-oxidants, such as NAC and TP, has been shown to be beneficial to the immune response in PAM.