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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Animal models in cancer research which could be useful in studies of the effect of alcohol on cellular immunity.

Alcohol appears to exert a depressive effect on host immunity. Animal models useful in studying immune responsiveness in cancer research are discussed, which could be of value in studying the effect of alcoholism. Allogeneic tumor grafts are poorly rejected in immunosuppressed mice. Of the four major cellular elements of the immune system, the macrophage appears to have a critical role in immune surveillance. Several conditions occur which abrogate or restrict the tumoricidal activity of macrophages. Stress induced by physical restraint results in depressed macrophage activation. The tumoricidal activation induced in macrophages by interferon was markedly depressed in the presence of the corticosteroids, hydrocortisone, prednisone, and dexamethasone. In addition, prostaglandins (PGE1 and PGE2) also were found to decrease interferon activation of macrophages. Since immune deficiency is a trait of alcoholism and cancer, animal models with defined, measurable, immunological parameters would be useful in studying the effect of alcohol on cellular immunity.[1]


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