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A protective role for endogenous tumor necrosis factor in Toxoplasma gondii infection.

By L L Johnson


The involvement of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) in resistance to Toxoplasma gondii infection was examined by means of experiments in which mice were treated with anti-TNF antibodies prior to infection with ME49, a low-virulence Toxoplasma strain. In (BALB/cBy x C57BL/6J)F1 (CB6F1) mice, which are highly resistant to intraperitoneal (i.p.) infection with T. gondii ME49, 10(4) neutralizing units of anti-TNF caused a significant increase in trophozoite numbers in the peritoneal cavities of infected mice and transient signs of illness but no deaths. i.p. infection of anti-TNF-treated C57BL/6J (B6) mice, which are more susceptible to T. gondii and develop a chronic progressive toxoplasmosis, resulted in death for some of the mice. If the mice were infected perorally, however, and treated with anti-TNF, mortality was extensive in B6 mice but not in CB6F1 mice. Although it was not detected in their sera, TNF was found in the peritoneal fluids of i.p.-infected CB6F1 and B6 mice. Endogenously produced TNF thus appears to be an important mediator of resistance to T. gondii

Topics: Research Article
Year: 1992
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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