Pleiotropic effects of human lactoferrin in mice
We studied the effects of human lactoferrin (hLf), a multifunctional protein from the transferrin family, on integral (survival, lifespan during the experiment, body weight, behavior, subfractional compositions of blood serum) and systemic (hemoglobin level, leukocyte number, differential leukocyte count, histological structure of the liver and spleen) parameters of the body in mice after acute gamma irradiation in a sublethal dose. The experiments were performed on male C57BL/6 mice. The mice in the experimental groups were exposed to whole-body gamma radiation in a dose of 7.5 Gy from a 60Co source. Immediately after irradiation and 24 h after it, some animals received an intraperitoneal injection of hLf (4 mg/mouse). Single or repeated administration of hLf had a positive pleiotropic effect on irradiated animals: animal survival increased from 28% to 78%, and the mean life expectancy during the experiment (30 days) increased from 16 to 26 days. A compensatory effect of hLf on radiation-induced body weight loss, changes in homeostasis parameters, and a protective effect on the structural organization of the spleen were demonstrated. These data indicate that Lf has potential as a means of early therapy after radiation exposure.