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Title: Early IFN-gamma production is related to the presence of interleukin (IL)-18 and the absence of IL-13 in experimental Trypanosoma cruzi infections
Authors: Antúnez, M I 
Cardoni, R L 
Issue Date: 3-Dec-2001
Journal: Immunology letters 
Abstract: Gamma-interferon (IFN-gamma) production, the hallmark of the Th1 immune response, has been shown to play a central role in the resistance to Trypanosoma cruzi infections, in particular when produced in the very early acute infection. BALB/c mice infected with T. cruzi, Tulahuén strain, reach high parasitemias during the acute phase, and their spleen cells release IFN-gamma in the second week of the infection, while those of the resistant C3H strain produce the cytokine earlier, at 2 days post-infection (pi). We studied in the spleen cells supernatants of infected BALB/c and C3H mice, the spontaneous production of cytokines involved in the induction, interleukin (IL)-18 and IL-12 p70, as well as in the downregulation, IL-13 and IL-10, of the Th1 immune response. We found that, at 2 days pi, only C3H mice produced IL-18, while IL-12 p70 was detected in both mouse strains. Moreover, at this time pi splenocytes from BALB/c mice spontaneously produced high amounts of IL-13. At 14 days pi, despite the increased levels of IL-13 and IL-10 detected in C3H mice, they still showed high concentrations of IL-18 and IL-12 p70. In contrast, spleen cells from BALB/c mice did not secrete IL-18, IL-12 p70 and IL-13 at this time pi, but produced higher amounts of IL-10 than C3H mice. Non of these cytokines was found increased in the cell supernatants of chronically infected mice. The addition of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or Concanavalin A (Con A) to the cell cultures did not enhance the production of IL-18 and IL-12 at the time points tested. On the other hand, at 21 days pi, when parasitemia peaked, an inhibition of both the LPS induced IL-10 release and the IL-13 production upon Con A stimulation was observed in C3H, but not in BALB/c mice. We did not find an increase of IL-18, IL-10, or IL-12 p70 in the serum of the infected mice, despite the high seric IL-12 p40 concentrations reached during the infection. The data show that the different kinetics of the production of these cytokines in the spleen of both mouse strains could have a key role in the in vivo regulation of IFN-gamma production. In these experimental models, early IFN-gamma release and thus resistance to T. cruzi infection, could be related to the combined effect of both IL-18 and IL-12p70 in the absence of IL-13.
ISSN: 0165-2478
DOI: 10.1016/s0165-2478(01)00283-8
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