Exposure of certain strains of mice to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is known to suppress both local and systemic immune responses, including a reduction in the phagocytic activity of peritoneal macrophages. However, in many instances, the immunological effects have been observed following a single or a limited number of doses of UVR from sources containing a higher proportion of UVB than that emitted by the sun. The first aim of the present study was to establish whether a single exposure of C3H/HeN mice to solar simulated radiation (SSR) suppressed the ability of the peritoneal macrophages to phagocytose opsonised sheep red blood cells. The mice were irradiated with SSR from Cleo Natural lamps and a single dose of 31.9 J cm−2 was found to be the minimal dose for significant suppression of macrophage phagocytic activity. Such a dose did not modulate the surface expression of I-Ak, CD11b, CD86 or FcγRII/III (CD32/16) on the macrophages. The second aim was to assess whether repeated SSR exposures with a dose below the minimal immunosuppressive dose affected macrophage activity and, if so, to test for photoadaptation by repeated exposures followed by a single, normally immunosuppressive dose of SSR, and then assaying the macrophage activity. Groups of mice were irradiated on each of 2, 10 and 30 days with 14.9 J cm−2 SSR, followed in some instances by a single additional exposure of 31.9 J cm−2 on the same day as the last irradiation. The phagocytic activity of the peritoneal macrophages was tested 24 h later. It was reduced by 32%, 18% and 4% respectively after 2, 10 and 30 repeated exposures to SSR, and by 39%, 21% and 7% respectively after 2, 10 and 30 repeated exposures plus the additional higher dose at the end. Thus, although the macrophage activity was initially suppressed by the SSR, photoadaptation of this immune parameter occurred following repeated exposures.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry