We accessed the effects of different photoperiodic regimes, i.e. long (LP; 20L:4D), short (SP; 4L:20D) and natural day photoperiod during reproductively inactive and reproductively active phase on immune parameters of lungs and general immunity of Perdicula asiatica. SP increased bronchus-associated lymphoid tissue (BALT) and non-BALT nodule size, total leukocyte count, lymphocyte count, plasma melatonin level, percent stimulation ratio of lymphocytes and decreased testicular activity (weight and testosterone level). LP during both the reproductive phases decreased the above-mentioned immune parameters suggesting that photoperiod might be regulating lung-associated immune system (LAIS) via melatonin. We also extended our study to note the expression of melatonin receptor types Mel1a and Mel1b in lung tissue to support our above statement. Western blot analysis showed significant increase in expression of Mel1a and Mel1b receptor types under SP conditions and decreased expression under LP condition when compared with control group of both reproductive phases. This suggests the probable involvement of Mel1a and Mel1b receptors in mediation of photoperiodic signals to LAIS. P. asiatica is a photoperiodic bird hence photoperiodically regulated melatonin hormone and its receptors in the lung might be responsible for modulation of lung-associated immunity.
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