Presentation Title

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol and its effect of the Severity of Candida albicans induced Vulvovaginal Candidiasis

Faculty Mentor

Nancy Buckley

Start Date

18-11-2017 9:45 AM

End Date

18-11-2017 10:00 AM

Location

9-273

Session

Bio Sciences 3

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

biological_agricultural_sciences

Abstract

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component in marijuana, has been reported to have immunomodulatory effects. With the high incidence of Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) in women, and the increase accepted use of THC, we aimed to determine the effects of THC on VVC in mice. For our studies, c57BL/6 female mice were treated chronically with THC on days 1-4, 8-11 and 15-18. Some mice were immunosuppressed with 5-flourouracil (5-F) on day 16. Mice were given Depo-Provera on day 12 and 18 to thin the mucosal lining of the vagina and facilitate uptake of the C. albicans. To infect the mice, the mice were intravaginally challenged with 1x106 C. albicans cells/mouse on day 19. On day 22, three days’ post C. albicans infection, tissues were collected for fungal load and cytokine production evaluation. We found that, compared to the other groups, immunosuppressed mice treated with THC suffer a significant weight loss right after infection, indicating higher morbidity. As for Vaginal/Uterine fungal load, the mice who received the THC compared to the mice who did not receive the THC experienced a higher fungal load indicating a more severe VVC infection. The cytokine interleukin-17 (IL-17) has been reported to have a protective role in fungal infections. However, we did not find a robust production of this cytokine in blood serum of VVC infected mice, nor did we find that THC had a significant effect on IL-17. We propose that THC treatment alter the severity of VVC as assessed by tissue fungal load.

Summary of research results to be presented

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component in marijuana, has been reported to have immunomodulatory effects. With the high incidence of Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) in women, and the increase accepted use of THC, we aimed to determine the effects of THC on VVC in mice. Because THC has been seen to decrease host resistance to various pathogens, we hypothesized that THC would increase severity the of VVC. For our studies, c57BL/6 female mice were treated chronically with THC on days 1-4, 8-11 and 15-18. Some mice were immunosuppressed with 5-flourouracil (5-F) on day 16. Mice were given Depo-Provera on day 12 and 18 to thin the mucosal lining of the vagina and facilitate uptake of the C. albicans. To infect the mice, the mice were intravaginally challenged with 1x106 C. albicans cells/mouse on day 19. On day 22, three days’ post C. albicans infection, tissues were collected for fungal load and cytokine production evaluation. We found that, compared to the other groups, immunosuppressed mice treated with THC suffer a significant weight loss right after infection, indicating higher morbidity. As for Vaginal/Uterine fungal load, the mice who received the THC compared to the mice who did not receive the THC experienced a higher fungal load indicating a more severe VVC infection. The cytokine interleukin-17 (IL-17) has been reported to have a protective role in fungal infections. However, we did not find a robust production of this cytokine in blood serum of VVC infected mice, nor did we find that THC had a significant effect on IL-17. We propose that THC treatment alters the severity of VVC as assessed by tissue fungal load.

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Nov 18th, 9:45 AM Nov 18th, 10:00 AM

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol and its effect of the Severity of Candida albicans induced Vulvovaginal Candidiasis

9-273

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive component in marijuana, has been reported to have immunomodulatory effects. With the high incidence of Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) in women, and the increase accepted use of THC, we aimed to determine the effects of THC on VVC in mice. For our studies, c57BL/6 female mice were treated chronically with THC on days 1-4, 8-11 and 15-18. Some mice were immunosuppressed with 5-flourouracil (5-F) on day 16. Mice were given Depo-Provera on day 12 and 18 to thin the mucosal lining of the vagina and facilitate uptake of the C. albicans. To infect the mice, the mice were intravaginally challenged with 1x106 C. albicans cells/mouse on day 19. On day 22, three days’ post C. albicans infection, tissues were collected for fungal load and cytokine production evaluation. We found that, compared to the other groups, immunosuppressed mice treated with THC suffer a significant weight loss right after infection, indicating higher morbidity. As for Vaginal/Uterine fungal load, the mice who received the THC compared to the mice who did not receive the THC experienced a higher fungal load indicating a more severe VVC infection. The cytokine interleukin-17 (IL-17) has been reported to have a protective role in fungal infections. However, we did not find a robust production of this cytokine in blood serum of VVC infected mice, nor did we find that THC had a significant effect on IL-17. We propose that THC treatment alter the severity of VVC as assessed by tissue fungal load.