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In vivo regulation of nitric oxide production by tumor necrosis factor alpha and gamma interferon, but not by interleukin-4, during blood stage malaria in mice.

By P Jacobs, D Radzioch and M M Stevenson


We investigated whether gamma interferon (IFN-gamma; a Th1 cytokine), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), and interleukin-4 (IL-4; a Th2 cytokine) modulate nitric oxide (NO) production in vivo during blood stage infection with Plasmodium chabaudi AS. Treatment of resistant C57BL/6 mice, which resolve infection with P. chabaudi AS and produce increased levels of IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and NO early during infection, with anti-IFN- gamma plus anti-TNF-alpha monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) resulted in a reduction of both splenic inducible NO synthase mRNA and serum NO3- levels by 50 and 100%, respectively. Treatment with the anti-TNF-alpha MAb alone reduced only serum NO3- levels by 35%, and treatment with the anti-IFN-gamma MAb alone had no effect on NO production by these mice during infection. Susceptible A/J mice, which succumb to infection with P. chabaudi AS and produce increased levels of IL-4 but low levels of IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and NO early during infection, were treated with an anti-IL-4 MAb. The latter treatment had no effect on NO production by this mouse strain during infection. In addition, our results also demonstrate that treatment of resistant C57BL/6 mice with anti-IFN-gamma plus anti-TNF-alpha MAbs affects, in addition to NO production, other traits of resistance to P. chabaudi AS malaria such as the peak level of parasitemia and the development of splenomegaly. Furthermore, the change in spleen weight was shown to be an IFN-gamma-independent effect of TNF-alpha. Treatment of susceptible A/J mice during infection with an anti IL-4 MAb had no effect on these markers of resistance. Thus, these results demonstrate that TNF-alpha and IFN-gamma are critical in the regulation of NO production and other traits of resistance during P. chabaudi AS malaria in C57BL/6 mice. These data also indicate that treatment with an anti-IL-4 antibody alone is not able to induce NO production or confer resistance to A/J mice against P. chabaudi AS malaria

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1996
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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