Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Immunol. 2000 Jul 15;165(2):628-31.

Cutting edge: IL-12 is required for the maintenance of IFN-gamma production in T cells mediating chronic resistance to the intracellular pathogen, Toxoplasma gondii.

Author information

Immunobiology Section, Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


IL-12 is required for the development of IFN-gamma-dependent resistance to intracellular pathogens but is not thought to play a major role in its maintenance. To directly assess the requirement for continuous IL-12 signaling in long-term cell-mediated immunity, recombinant cytokine was transiently administered to IL-12 p40-deficient mice during the first 2 wk of infection with the intracellular pathogen Toxoplasma gondii. As expected, these animals survived the acute phase and established chronic infections. However, 4-6 wk after IL-12 withdrawal, the mice exhibited increased brain cyst burdens and succumbed to toxoplasmic encephalitis. Reactivation was associated with a loss of T-dependent IFN-gamma production without a concomitant increase in Th2 cytokine expression. Importantly, parasite Ag-induced IFN-gamma synthesis by purified T cells from these animals could be restored by in vitro exposure to IL-12. These results argue that endogenous IL-12 is required for the long-term maintenance of IFN-gamma-dependent resistance against intracellular pathogens.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center