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Clin Infect Dis. 2001 Sep 15;33 Suppl 3:S221-6.

Perspective on animal models: chronic intracellular infections.

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  • 1Kuzell Institute for Arthritis and Infectious Diseases, California Pacific Medical Center, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA.


Systemic human disease caused by organisms of the Mycobacterium avium-Mycobacterium intracellulare complex (MAC) represent a chronic intracellular infection in human hosts who are usually immunocompromised. To develop improved treatment and prophylaxis, and to obtain a better understanding of pathogenesis, we studied the beige mouse (C57 beige(+)/beige(+)) challenged orally or intravenously with a human isolate that causes lethal disease in patients with AIDS (MAC 101, serovar 1). Encouraging anti-MAC studies in animals, as reviewed here, should provide the basis for considering human trials with a promising agent. The ability of an antimicrobial agent to achieve high intracellular concentrations has correlated with the in vivo activity of several specific compounds.

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