Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 8-5-1966


Mice, like guinea pigs, develop acute anaphylaxis, and in both I species humoral antibodies also can be responsible for a more protracted form of systemic shock, sometimes termed "protracted anaphylaxis". This is characterized in the mouse, as shown here, by a profound drop in temperature. In mice with simultaneously existing humoral antibody and cellular antibody hypersensitivites to an antigen, recovery from such hypothermia is delayed by several hours, an observation which had been thought in the past to indicate that hypothermia also is a characteristic of delayed hypersensitivity systemic reactions. But hypothermia was not evident in mice with delayed hypersensitivity uncomplicated by coexisting anaphylactic antibodies; this was discovered using the polysaccharide antigen dextran and in mice sensitized with entire avirulent tubercle bacilli. The chemical natures of antigens used in these experiments were I examined by destroying proteins with Pronase and polysaccharides with periodic acid oxidation. These studies revealed that the type of antigen responsible for dermal and systemic immediate and delayed reactions to ovalbumin, human serum albumin, and tuberculoprotein is protein, but that polysaccharide is the determinant in dextran responsible for delayed hypersensitivity to this substance (no immediate hypersensitivity developed to dextran). This report contains what apparently is the first description of a systemic delayed hypersensitivity reaction to a polysaccharide.