Revista da Sociedade Brasileira de Medicina Tropical
On-line version ISSN 1678-9849
OLIVEIRA, Ludmila and ANDRADE, Zilton A.. Significance of bile-duct changes in schistosomiasis. Rev. Soc. Bras. Med. Trop. [online]. 2005, vol.38, n.6, pp. 464-468. ISSN 1678-9849. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0037-86822005000600003.
Lesions involving the intra-hepatic biliary ducts in schistosomiasis have been reported in the literature, both in mice and man, but there are no data concerning their quantitative, evolutionary or post curative chemotherapeutic aspects on record. In order to obtain such data an investigation on this subject was attempted. Mice infected with 50 Schistosoma mansoni cercariae were submitted to a liver biopsy at the 9th week post-infection, and treated with 400mg/bw praziquantel immediately afterwards. Infected and non-infected controls were submitted to the same procedures. By 19 weeks from cercarial exposure all surviving animals were sacrificed. The biliary ducts were counted on histological sections and the results were expressed as biliary ducts/portal spaces. This quantitative evaluation was compared with that from normal controls and revealed hyperplasia as the main biliary duct change (p<0.007) in schistosomiasis. Hyperplastic changes underwent only mild partial and not statistically significant regression after specific chemotherapy (p>0.05). Infected and untreated animals presented ductal changes that did not differ from those of the treated group. Measurements of serum bilirrubin (total and direct), and gamma-glutamyl-transpeptidase (g-GT) did not reveal significant differences when animals from the several groups were compared. Thus, bile ducts exhibit a proliferative response in relation to neighboring S. mansoni injury to portal areas, but although these lesions are histopathologically impressive, they lack a functional or prognostic significance.
Keywords : Schistosoma mansoni; Hepatic schistosomiasis; Bile ducts.