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Immunology. 1995 Dec;86(4):519-24.

Protection against tuberculosis by bone marrow cells expressing mycobacterial hsp65.

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Department of Parasitology, Microbiology and Immunology, School of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto, University of São Paulo, Brazil.


Although mice acquire only a slight degree of protection against tuberculosis by immunization with Mycobacterium leprae (M. leprae) hsp65 in incomplete Freund's adjuvant, protection is substantial following immunization by injection with J774 macrophage-like tumour cells that express the protein from the mycobacterial gene via a retroviral vector. We here took the same vector, used it to transfect the gene into normal murine bone marrow cells in vitro, and then used the transfected cells to reconstitute haematopoiesis in lethally irradiated mice. Bone marrow-cell clonal expansion and production of the protein in vivo resulted in specific delayed-type hypersensitivity and protection against challenge with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) in about half of recipients. Counts of live bacteria in liver at 3 weeks were fivefold lower in delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH)-positive than in DTH-negative mice. Other mice acquired neither DTH nor protection despite the presence of the protein in peripheral blood.

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