Changes of serum thymic factor levels in friend leukemia virus-infected mice

Enrico Garaci, Vera del Gobbo, Laura Santucci, Giovanni Battista Rossi, Cristina Rinaldi-Garaci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sera and spleen cells from DBA/2 and BALB/c mice were sampled at various time intervals after infection with Friend leukemia virus (FLV, polycythemic strain) and assayed for the presence of serum thymic factor (STF) and theta-positive cells, respectively. A pronounced and dose-dependent decrease of STF levels was observed in DBA/2 mice as early as 48 h after infection; STF levels were decreased in BALB/c mice, too, but the effect was less marked and long-lived than in DBA/2 mice. In close parallelism to the fall of STF levels in the sera, theta-positive cells were also found to be markedly decreased in the spleens of DBA/2 mice and, to a lesser extent, in BALB/c mice. Thetapositive cells were assayed by measuring the sensitivity to azathioprine of spleen rosette-forming cells. Both the fall of STF levels and the decrease of theta-positive spleen cells do not persist longer than 4 weeks and are not, therefore, related to the state of overt leukemia. Conceivably, though, these changes, that appear to be virus-related, may influence the early fate of FLV-transformed cells by lowering some thymus-dependent functions which may be relevant to the immunological surveillance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-74
Number of pages8
JournalLeukemia Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1979


  • azathioprine
  • cell-mediated immunity
  • Friend leukemia virus
  • leukemogenesis
  • theta-positive cells
  • Thymic Factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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