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Microbiol Immunol. 1981;25(8):807-18.

Murine defense mechanism against Candida albicans infection. II. Opsonization, phagocytosis, and intracellular killing of C. albicans.


The phagocytic and intracellular killing activities of normal mouse phagocytes against Candida albicans were studied to elucidate the role of these activities in nonspecific and specific defense mechanisms. In the presence of fresh normal mouse serum, viable C. albicans cells were ingested by mouse peripheral blood leukocytes (PBLs) and peritoneal macrophages (PMPs) at the same rate. Serum-chelation experiments indicated that the factors involved in the alternative complement pathway are opsonins for C. albicans. PBLs killed intracellular C. albicans more effectively than PMPs. Lymphokine-activated PMPs manifested marked intracellular killing activity and the occurrence of increased superoxide anion- and singlet oxygen production, in the absence of increased myeloperoxidase (MPO) production, suggests that the enhanced, MPO-independent, oxidative mechanism may play an important role in the candidacidal activity. Specific rabbit antibodies played no role in the phagocytosis and intracellular killing of C. albicans. These results suggest that PMNs and factors involved in the alternative complement pathways, and lymphokine-activated macrophages play major roles in the protection of mice against C. albicans infection.

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