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Expression of inhibitory receptors and polyfunctional responses of T cells are linked to the risk of congenital transmission of T-cruzi

AuthorsEgui, Adriana; Lasso, Paola; Thomas, María del Carmen; Carrilero, Bartolomé; González, John M.; Cuéllar, Adriana; Segovia, Manuel; Puerta, Concepción J.; López López, Manuel Carlos
KeywordsPolymerase Chain-Reaction
Chronic Chagasic Patients
Nonendemic Country
Issue Date9-Jun-2017
PublisherPublic Library of Science
CitationPLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
AbstractCongenital T. cruzi infections involve multiple factors in which complex interactions between the parasite and the immune system of pregnant women play important roles. In this study, we used an experimental murine model of chronic infection with T. cruzi to evaluate the changes in the expression of inhibitory receptors and the polyfunctionality of T cells during gestation and their association with congenital transmission rate of T. cruzi infection. The results showed that pregnant naive mice had a higher percentage of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells that expressed inhibitory receptors than cells from non-pregnant naive mice. However, in mice chronically infected with T. cruzi, gestation induced a significant decrease in the frequency of T cells that expressed or co-expressed inhibitory receptors, as well as an increase in the frequency of polyfunctional CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells. This different behavior may be due to the breakdown in the infected mice of the gestation-induced immune homeostasis, probably to control the parasite load. Remarkably, it was observed that the mothers that transmitted the parasite had a higher frequency of T cells that expressed and co-expressed inhibitory receptors as well as a lower frequency of polyfunctional parasite-specific T cells than those that did not transmit it, even though the parasitemia load was similar in both groups. All together these data suggest that the maternal immune profile of the CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells could be a determining factor in the congenital transmission of T. cruzi.
Publisher version (URL)http://journals.plos.org/plosntds/article?id=10.1371/journal.pntd.0005627
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