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Nat Med. 1998 Nov;4(11):1247-52.

Regulation of host immune responses by modification of Salmonella virulence genes.

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Children's Hospital Medical Center, Division of Infectious Disease, Cincinnati, Ohio 45229, USA.


Modifying bacterial virulence genes to probe the nature of host immunity is mostly unexplored. Here we investigate whether host immune responses can be regulated by modification of bacterial virulence genes. In mice, attenuated Salmonella mutant strains with clinical relevance elicited differential host immune responses. Oral administration of a mutant strain with a PhoP-null phenotype promoted potent innate immune responses of macrophages that were sufficient for host defense. In contrast, administration of an Aro- mutant strain elicited stronger specific antibody and T-helper (Th)-cell responses, wherein Th1-type cells were required for clearance. Thus, genetic manipulation of bacteria may be used to broadly alter immune mechanisms that regulate attenuation within the host and to tailor host immunity to specific bacterial pathogens.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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