Journal Article

Impaired Production of Cytokines in a Case of Human Leishmaniasis

Christof Weinstock, Juergen Knobloch, Werner Schultheis and Hinnak Northoff

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 25, issue 6, pages 1334-1339
Published in print December 1997 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online December 1997 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/516123
Impaired Production of Cytokines in a Case of Human Leishmaniasis

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A patient presented with the unique clinical picture of diffuse cutaneous and mucosal leishmaniasis caused by Leishmania tropica. Elevated serum levels of several cytokines including interleukin (IL) 2, interferon γ (IFN-γ), and tumor necrosis factor α were found. All cytokine levels returned to normal during therapy. No IL-10 or IL-4 levels were detectable. In whole blood cultures, induction of IFN-γ by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) was completely negative, even after therapy. Concanavalin A (Con A)-induced release of IFN-γ, like Con A-induced release of the other cytokines, was only initially impaired but returned to normal during therapy. Induction of the other cytokines by LPS was never impaired. The low expression of human leukocyte antigen DR on monocytes increased during IFN-γ therapy but dropped when IFN-γ treatment was ceased. We conclude that in this patient one or more of the routes of IFN-γ production was impaired, thus resulting in insufficient IFN-γ production in the infected lesions (although IFN-γ was systemically present).

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Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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