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Cytokine. 2012 Apr;58(1):118-28. doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2011.11.021. Epub 2011 Dec 17.

Cytokines in the host response to Candida vaginitis: Identifying a role for non-classical immune mediators, S100 alarmins.

Author information

1
Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, LA, USA.

Abstract

Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC), caused by Candida albicans, affects a significant number of women during their reproductive years. More than two decades of research have been focused on the mechanisms associated with susceptibility or resistance to symptomatic infection. Adaptive immunity by Th1-type CD4(+) T cells and downstream cytokine responses are considered the predominant host defense mechanisms against mucosal Candida infections. However, numerous clinical and animal studies have indicated no or limited protective role of cells and cytokines of the Th1 or Th2 lineage against vaginal infection. The role for Th17 is only now begun to be investigated in-depth for VVC with results already showing significant controversy. On the other hand, a clinical live-challenge study and an established animal model have shown that a symptomatic condition is intimately associated with the vaginal infiltration of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) but with no effect on vaginal fungal burden. Subsequent studies identified S100A8 and S100A9 alarmins as key chemotactic mediators of the acute PMN response. These chemotactic danger signals appear to be secreted by vaginal epithelial cells upon interaction and early adherence of Candida. Thus, instead of a putative immunodeficiency against Candida involving classical immune cells and cytokines of the adaptive response, the pathological inflammation in VVC is now considered a consequence of a non-productive innate response initiated by non-classical immune mediators.

PMID:
22182685
PMCID:
PMC3290723
DOI:
10.1016/j.cyto.2011.11.021
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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