Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Scott Ford, Donald Bailey, James Skean

Degree Program

Department of Biology

Degree Type

Master of Science


Five-week-old male BALB/c mice were anesthetized and incised mid-dorsally to expose the fascia over the right kidney. The kidney was then palpated up and an inoculum of 0.05 ml containing approximately 100,000 viable Asperaillus flavus spores in phosphate-buffered saline was injected into the cortex. A second group of mice underwent similar surgical procedures, but were injected with phosphate-buffered saline only into the right kidney. This group was designated the sham-operated control mice. All mice, including controls, were bled for differential blood counts 24 and 48 h after surgical procedures and subsequently on an every-other-day basis for the duration of the experiment. For Experiment 1, groups consisting of three infected mice each were killed at intervals of 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 13 and 16 d. For Experiment 2, three infected animals plus one sham-operated and a control mouse were killed at corresponding intervals as in Experiment 1 and also on day 21. Both kidneys were removed from all animals for weighing and measuring and then the right kidney was processed for histological study.

Differential blood counts showed an increase in polymorphonuclear neutrophils in both infected and sham-operated animals, suggesting that the primary change in white blood cell counts was the result of the surgical procedure rather than the infection. Histological studies demonstrated a chronological progression of the development of the fungus in the pelvic area of the kidney, its infiltration into the surrounding tissues, and its effect on tissues in the cortex region of the kidney. The histopathological symptoms of pyelonephritis were present from day four of the infection and continued to be enhanced through the duration of the experiment. Other cellular changes such as fibrotic tissue formations around abscesses, stromal fibrous replacement, and epithelial proliferation also occurred at various stages of the infection.


Biology | Cell and Developmental Biology | Life Sciences