Role of bacterial association with Kuppfer cells in occurrence of endogenous systemic bacteremia

Y. Hirakata, K. Tomono, K. Tateda, T. Matsumoto, N. Furuya, K. Smigoguchi, M. Kaku, K. Yamaguchi

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51 Citations (Scopus)


Bacteremia in immunocompromised hosts often arises from their endogenous intestinal flora. We produced experimental endogenous bacteremia by administering cyclophosphamide and ampicillin to conventional and specific-pathogen-free mice. The frequencies of bacteremia and mortality in the conventional mice were significantly higher than for the specific-pathogen-free mice. Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the major pathogen causing systemic bacteremia in conventional mice and was associated with a high mortality rate. Morganella morganii caused systemic bacteremia in both conventional and specific-pathogen-free mice. In contrast, Escherichia coli, enterococci, or other species most often caused portal bacteremia only. To determine the mechanism of occurrence of systemic bacteremia, we investigated bacterial blood clearance in mice and association with murine Kupffer cells, using several bacterial strains isolated from mice with bacteremia. Blood clearance rates and the abilities of isolated Kupffer cells to associate with bacteria were significantly greater for the organisms causing portal bacteremia than for those causing systemic bacteremia. There were no significant differences between the blood clearance rates in carrageenan-treated mice and that in normal mice. Moreover, association at 4°C was not different from that at 37°C. The results suggest that blood clearance of bacteria reflects bacterial adherence to Kupffer cells and that the resistance of bacteria to association with Kupffer cells plays an important role in the occurrence of overwhelming systemic bacteremia in this animal model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-294
Number of pages6
JournalInfection and immunity
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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