Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Microbiology & Immunology

First Advisor

Daniel Conrad

Second Advisor

John Ryan

Third Advisor

Jamie Sturgill


Kainate receptor knockout mice have unique differences within their immune system. They exhibit an attenuated TH2 branch, while maintaining a robust TH1 response. Specifically, blocking the formation of functional kainate receptors affects mast cells and their related pathologies. While they seem to develop and activate normally in vivo and in vitro, KAR KO mast cells release more inflammatory mediators upon degranulation. These mice experience severe anaphylactic shock due to two compounding abnormalities. First, KAR KO mast cells release significantly more histamine in vivo upon IgE-mediated activation. Second, the animals over-respond to exogenous histamine with drastic temperature drops compared to WT. This report shows that the kainate receptor plays an important role in mast cell-mediated immune responses.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Available for download on Wednesday, June 24, 2020