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Exp Parasitol. 2011 Feb;127(2):448-53. doi: 10.1016/j.exppara.2010.10.008. Epub 2010 Oct 28.

Protective immunity against Leishmania major induced by Leishmania tropica infection of BALB/c mice.

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Immunology Department, Pasteur Institute of Iran, No 69 Pasteur Ave, Tehran 13164, Iran.


Leishmania (L.) tropica is a causative agent of human cutaneous and viscerotropic leishmaniasis. Immune response to L. tropica in humans and experimental animals are not well understood. We previously established that L. tropica infection induces partial protective immunity against subsequent challenge infection with Leishmania major in BALB/c mice. Aim of the present study was to study immunologic mechanisms of protective immunity induced by L. tropica infection, as a live parasite vaccine, in BALB/c mouse model. Mice were infected by L. tropica, and after establishment of the infection, they were challenged by L. major. Our findings shows that L. tropica infection resulted in protection against L. major challenge in BALB/c mice and this protective immunity is associated with: (1) a DTH response, (2) higher IFN-γ and lower IL-10 response at one week post-challenge, (3) lower percentage of CD4(+) lymphocyte at one month post-challenge, and (4) the source of IFN-γ and IL-10 were mainly CD4(-) lymphocyte up to one month post-challenge suggesting that CD4(-) lymphocytes may be responsible for protection induced by L. tropica infection in the studied intervals.

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