Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Immunol. 2001 Dec 1;167(11):6453-61.

IFN-alpha beta-dependent, IFN-gamma secretion by bone marrow-derived macrophages controls an intracellular bacterial infection.

Author information

  • 1Microbiology and Tumorbiology Center, Astrid Lindgren's Hospital, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.


Several reports have indicated that cell lineages apart from NK and T cells can also express IFN-gamma. However, the biological relevance of this finding is uncertain. We show in this study that bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMMs) express IFN-gamma at the mRNA and protein level early after infection with Chlamydia pneumoniae. Increased IFN-gamma mRNA accumulation by infected BMMs is early, transient, and requires both bacterial and host protein synthesis. The induction of IFN-gamma mRNA levels is independent of IL-12 and was dramatically enhanced in IL-10(-/-) BMMs. Such IL-10(-/-) BMMs contained less bacteria than the wild-type controls, whereas IFN-gammaR(-/-) BMMs showed increased C. pneumoniae load. Inducible NO synthase (iNOS) also participates in the control of bacterial load, as shown by the enhanced numbers of C. pneumoniae in iNOS(-/-) BMMs. However, the increased accumulation of iNOS mRNA and NO in C. pneumoniae-infected BMMs depended on the presence of IFN-alphabeta, but was independent of IFN-gamma. Interestingly, IFN-alphabeta are also required for increased IFN-gamma mRNA accumulation in C. pneumoniae-infected BMMs. Accordingly, IFN-alphabetaR(-/-) BMMs showed higher levels of C. pneumoniae than wild-type BMMs. Our findings unravel an autocrine/paracrine macrophage activation pathway by showing an IFN-alphabeta-dependent IFN-gamma and iNOS induction in response to infection, which protects macrophages against intracellular bacterial growth.

[PubMed - 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