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enhancement of the mucosal response, OVA microparticles increased both total and antigen-specific IgA and IgG1 antibody in the spleen and the serum, suggesting that microparticles antigen enhanced systemic immune response as well as local immune response in mucous.

In the mice that ingested 0.05% phycocyanin solution for 6 weeks, a marked increase in the antigen-specific IgA antibody level as well as the total IgA antibody was observed in the intestinal mucosa (Figure 10.10A), the Peyer's patches, and mesenteric lymph nodes (Figure 10.10B), which comprise a major part of the gut-associated lymphoid tissues (GALT), and also in the spleen cells (Figure 10.10C), whereas neither IgG1 nor IgE was affected (Figure 10.11A). Phycocyanin ingestion for 8 weeks, on the other hand, suppressed the production of antigen-specific IgG1 and IgE antibody in the serum (Figure 10.11B). Tokuyama et al.36 reported that mice treated simultaneously with retinoic acid and interleukin-5 (IL-5) enhanced IgA antibody production as a result of enhancing the class switch of B cells to IgA-antibody-producing precursor cells, while IgG1 antibody was strongly inhibited. This antagonistic antibody behavior produced by phycocyanin suggests that phycocyanin exerts its inhibitory effects against allergy through at least two ways: amplification of IgA production in the mucosal immunity to defend against the invasion of allergens, and suppression of IgE and IgG1 production in the systemic immunity to minimize excessive responses to allergens. IL-6 and IL-10 are also known to be involved in

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