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Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. 2012 Oct;102(3):473-80. Epub 2012 Jul 24.

Systemic increased immune response to Nocardia brasiliensis co-exists with local immunosuppressive microenvironment.

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Department of Immunology, School of Medicine, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, Mexico.


Human diseases produced by pathogenic actinomycetes are increasing because they may be present as opportunistic infections. Some of these microbes cause systemic infections associated with immunosuppressive conditions, such as chemotherapy for cancer, immunosuppressive therapy for transplant, autoimmune conditions, and AIDS; while others usually cause localized infection in immunocompetent individuals. Other factors related to this increase in incidence are: antibiotic resistance, not well defined taxonomy, and a delay in isolation and identification of the offending microbe. Examples of these infections are systemic disease and brain abscesses produced by Nocardia asteroides or the located disease by Nocardia brasiliensis, named actinomycetoma. During the Pathogenic Actinomycetes Symposium of the 16th International Symposium on Biology of Actinomycetes (ISBA), held in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, several authors presented recent research on the mechanisms by which N. brasiliensis modulates the immune system to survive in the host and advances in medical treatment of human actinomycetoma. Antibiotics and antimicrobials that are effective against severe actinomycetoma infections with an excellent therapeutic outcome and experimental studies of drugs that show promising bacterial inhibition in vivo and in vitro were presented. Here we demonstrate a systemic strong acquired immune response in humans and experimental mice at the same time of a local dominance of anti inflammatory cytokines environment. The pathogenic mechanisms of some actinomycetes include generation of an immunosuppressive micro environment to evade the protective immune response. This information will be helpful in understanding pathogenesis and to design new drugs for treatment of actinomycetoma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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