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Initial Route Of Antigen Administration Alters The T-cell Cytokine Profile Produced In Response To The Mouse Pneumonitis Biovar Of Chlamydia Trachomatis Following Genital Infection

K. Kelly, E. Robinson, R. Rank
Published 1996 · Medicine, Biology

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A Th1-type response develops following vaginal infection with the mouse pneumonitis biovar of Chlamydia trachomatis (MoPn). Since the type of response, i.e., Th1 versus Th2, can be influenced by factors present during T-cell activation, we examined the effects of different routes of MoPn administration on the cytokine profile and resistance against infection following a MoPn vaginal challenge. A dominant Th1-type cytokine profile developed in mice given live MoPn via the intranasal, oral, and vaginal routes with ratios of gamma interferon-secreting cells to interleukin 4-secreting cells greater than 10. In contrast, mice injected subcutaneously produced a Th2-type profile with a gamma interferon/interleukin 4 ratio of only 0.7. These mice also had significantly higher anti-MoPn immunoglobulin G1 serum titers, confirming a Th2-type cytokine profile. Exposure of mice to live MoPn, by any route prior to vaginal challenge, resulted in a shortened course of infection. However, the subcutaneous group resolved the vaginal infection more slowly, with 60% (6 of 10 mice) of the mice still isolation positive 12 days after challenge compared with only 20% of mice given live MoPn by other routes. Administration of UV-inactivated MoPn did not provide protection against a vaginal challenge. The decreased ability to clear infection was not associated with a shift in the cytokine profile, since intranasal and oral administration of UV-inactivated MoPn resulted in a predominant Th1-type response. Taken together, these data indicate that the initial route of MoPn administration can direct the type of response produced after a local MoPn infection and thus influence the ability of the immune response to protect against subsequent infection.
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