Send to

Choose Destination
Adv Virus Res. 2012;83:41-71. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-394438-2.00002-5.

Phage as a modulator of immune responses: practical implications for phage therapy.

Author information

Bacteriophage Laboratory, Ludwik Hirszfeld Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy, Polish Academy of Sciences, Wrocław, Poland.


Although the natural hosts for bacteriophages are bacteria, a growing body of data shows that phages can also interact with some populations of mammalian cells, especially with cells of the immune system. In general, these interactions include two main aspects. The first is the phage immunogenicity, that is, the capacity of phages to induce specific immune responses, in particular the generation of specific antibodies against phage antigens. The other aspect includes the immunomodulatory activity of phages, that is, the nonspecific effects of phages on different functions of major populations of immune cells involved in both innate and adaptive immune responses. These functions include, among others, phagocytosis and the respiratory burst of phagocytic cells, the production of cytokines, and the generation of antibodies against nonphage antigens. The aim of this chapter is to discuss the interactions between phages and cells of the immune system, along with their implications for phage therapy. These topics are presented based on the results of experimental studies and unique data on immunomodulatory effects found in patients with bacterial infections treated with phage preparations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center