Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Infect Immun. 1992 Jan;60(1):84-9.

In vivo modulation of the murine immune response to Francisella tularensis LVS by administration of anticytokine antibodies.

Author information

Department of Cellular Immunology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Rockville, Maryland 20850.


The role(s) of gamma interferon (IFN-gamma), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), and interleukin-4 (IL-4) in establishment and maintenance of protective immunity to Francisella tularensis LVS in mice (C3H/HeN) was examined by selective removal of these cytokines in vivo with neutralizing antibodies. The 50% lethal dose (LD50) for mice infected intradermally with F. tularensis alone was 136,000 CFU; treatment of mice with anti-IFN-gamma or anti-TNF-alpha at the time of infection significantly reduced (P much less than 0.05) the LD50 to 2 and 5 CFU, respectively. Abrogation of protective immunity, however, was effective only when anti-IFN-gamma or anti-TNF-alpha was administered prior to day 3 postinfection. In contrast, the LD50 for mice treated with anti-IL-4 was repeatedly higher (555,000 CFU) than for controls; this difference, however, was not significant (P greater than 0.05). Thus, IL-4 may be detrimental, while IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha were clearly crucial to the establishment of protective immunity to F. tularensis during a primary infection. The importance of IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha during a secondary immune response to F. tularensis was also investigated. Spleen cells from immune mice passively transfer protective immunity to recipient mice in the absence of confounding antibody-mediated immunity. This passive transfer of immunity, however, was abrogated by treatment of recipient mice with anti-IFN-gamma or anti-TNF-alpha at the time of challenge infection. That anticytokines effectively abrogate protective immunity very early in the course of infection with F. tularensis suggests that T-cell-dependent activation of macrophages for microbicidal activity is unlikely. These T-cell-independent events early in the course of infection may suppress bacterial replication until a T-cell-dependent response ultimately clears the bacteria.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center