Original article| Volume 23, ISSUE 1, P50-53, February 2001

Bax-induced apoptosis not demonstrated in the congenital toxoplasmosis in mice


      A prominent neuropathological change observed in a murine model of congenital toxoplasmosis is cerebral cortical hypoplasia. In the early embryonic life of toxoplasmosis mice, the number of apoptotic cell observed in cerebral cortex is increased, indicating that increased number of apoptotic cells might relate to the pathogenetic mechanism of the cortical hypoplasia. Immunohistochemical expression of apoptosis-related factors, Bcl-2 and Bax has been studied in fetal murine brains infected with toxoplasma and in controls. Paraffin sections of the fetal brains on embryonic day (ED) 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18 were applied for the immunostains of Bcl-2 and Bax. Totally, 47 experimental animals (ED10: n=8, ED12: n=6, ED14: n=12, ED16: n=6, ED18: n=15) and 48 control animals (ED10: n=6, ED12: n=8, ED14: n=9, ED16: n=9, ED18: n=16) were examined. Bcl-2 positive cells were detected on ED10, whereas Bax positive cells appeared on ED14. No difference of Bcl-2 and Bax expression between toxoplasmosis and control groups was detected, suggesting that there is no clear relation between Bax-induced apoptosis and cortical dysplasia in congenital toxoplasmosis.


      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Brain and Development
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Robertson J.S.
        Dev Med Child Neurol. 1962; 4: 507-518
        • Hay J.
        • Hutchison W.M.
        • Lee W.R.
        • Siim J.C.
        Cataract in mice congenitally infected with Toxoplasma gondii.
        Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 1981; 75: 455-457
        • Hutchison W.M.
        • Hay J.
        • Lee W.R.
        • Siim J.C.
        A study of cataract in murine congenital toxoplasmosis.
        Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 1982; 76: 53-70
        • Minamitani M.
        • Tanaka J.
        • Suzuki Y.
        Pathomechanism of cerebral hypoplasia in experimental toxoplasmosis in murine fetuses.
        Early Hum Dev. 1996; 44: 37-50
        • Cowan W.M.
        • Fawcett J.W.
        • O'Leary D.D.
        • Stanfield B.B.
        Regressive events in neurogenesis.
        Science. 1984; 225: 1258-1265
        • Oppenheim R.W.
        Cell death during development of the nervous system.
        Annu Rev Neurosci. 1991; 14: 453-501
        • Kroemer G.
        The proto-oncogene Bcl-2 and its role in regulating apoptosis.
        Nat Med. 1997; 3: 614-620
        • Krajewski S.
        • Krajewska M.
        • Shabaik A.
        • Miyashita T.
        • Wang H.G.
        • Reed J.C.
        Immunohistochemical determination of in vivo distribution of Bax, a dominant inhibitor of Bcl-2.
        Am J Pathol. 1994; 145: 1323-1336
        • Gavrieli Y.
        • Sherman Y.
        • Ben-Sasson S.A.
        Identification of programmed cell death in situ via specific labeling of nuclear DNA fragmentation.
        J Cell Biol. 1992; 119: 493-501
        • Griffin D.E.
        • Hardwick J.M.
        Perspective: virus infections and the death of neurons.
        Trends Microbiol. 1999; 7: 155-160
        • Wang B.
        • Fujita K.
        • Ohhira C.
        • Watanabe K.
        • Odaka T.
        • Mitani H.
        • et al.
        Radiation-induced apoptosis and limb teratogenesis in embryonic mice.
        Radiat Res. 1999; 151: 63-68
        • Derouin F.
        • Garin Y.J.
        Toxoplasma gondii: blood and tissue kinetics during acute and chronic infections in mice.
        Exp Parasitol. 1991; 73: 460-468
        • Desmonts G.
        • Couvreur J.
        Congenital toxoplasmosis. A prospective study of 378 pregnancies.
        N Engl J Med. 1974; 290: 1110-1116
        • Stahl W.
        • Kaneda Y.
        Cerebral anomalies in congenital murine toxoplasmosis: a preliminary report.
        Tokai J Exp Clin Med. 1998; 23: 261-265
        • Brunton C.L.
        • Wallace G.R.
        • Graham E.
        • Stanford M.R.
        The effect of cytokines on the replication of T. gondii within rat retinal vascular endothelial cells.
        J Neuroimmunol. 2000; 102: 182-188
        • Deckert-Schluter M.
        • Bluethmann H.
        • Kaefer N.
        • Rang A.
        • Schluter D.
        Interferon-gamma receptor-mediated but not tumor necrosis factor receptor type 1- or type 2-mediated signaling is crucial for the activation of cerebral blood vessel endothelial cells and microglia in murine Toxoplasma encephalitis.
        Am J Pathol. 1999; 154: 1549-1561
        • Oltvai Z.N.
        • Milliman C.L.
        • Korsmeyer S.J.
        Bcl-2 heterodimerizes in vivo with a conserved homolog, Bax, that accelerates programmed cell death.
        Cell. 1993; 74: 609-619
        • Vaux D.L.
        • Cory S.
        • Adams J.M.
        Bcl-2 gene promotes haemopoietic cell survival and cooperates with c-myc to immortalize pre-B cells.
        Nature. 1988; 335: 440-442
        • Castren E.
        • Ohga Y.
        • Berzaghi M.P.
        • Tzimagiorgis G.
        • Thoenen H.
        • Lindholm D.
        bcl-2 messenger RNA is localized in neurons of the developing and adult rat brain.
        Neuroscience. 1994; 61: 165-177
        • Ferrer I.
        • Tortosa A.
        • Condom E.
        • Blanco R.
        • Macaya A.
        • Planas A.
        Increased expression of bcl-2 immunoreactivity in the developing cerebral cortex of the rat.
        Neurosci Lett. 1994; 179: 13-16
        • Gillardon F.
        • Wickert H.
        • Zimmermann M.
        Up-regulation of bax and down-regulation of bcl-2 is associated with kainate-induced apoptosis in mouse brain.
        Neurosci Lett. 1995; 192: 85-88
        • Hara A.
        • Iwai T.
        • Niwa M.
        • Uematsu T.
        • Yoshimi N.
        • Tanaka T.
        • et al.
        Immunohistochemical detection of Bax and Bcl-2 proteins in gerbil hippocampus following transient forebrain ischemia.
        Brain Res. 1996; 711: 249-253
        • Novack D.V.
        • Korsmeyer S.J.
        Bcl-2 protein expression during murine development.
        Am J Pathol. 1994; 145: 61-73