Chlamydia muridarum Alters the Immune Environment of the Murine Genital Tract to be More Permissive for Infection with Neisseria gonorrhoeae in a Novel Coinfection Model
Uniformed Services University Of The Health Sciences Bethesda United States
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Coinfection with Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Chlamydia trachomatis occurs frequently, yet studies of the interaction between these two pathogens within the host have been hindered by the lack of an experimental model. Here we describe development and characterization of a female mouse model of gonococcal and chlamydial coinfection. BALBc mice were first infected with C. muridarum, the mouse chlamydiae, and then inoculated with N. gonorrhoeae following estradiol treatment to promote long-term gonococcal colonization. Viable gonococci and chlamydiae were recovered by vaginal swab and organisms were visible in the tissue by immunohistochemical staining. Coinfected mice had a higher percentage of vaginal neutrophils compared to mice infected with either pathogen alone and significantly more gonococci were recovered from coinfected mice compared to mice infected with N. gonorrhoeae alone.