Flow-cytometric analysis of cytokine production in human paracoccidioidomycosis

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Human infection with Paracoccidioides brasiliensis may result in three major outcomes: paracoccidioidomycosis-infection (PI), which is observed in healthy carriers living in endemic areas and the adult form (AF) and juvenile form (JF) of the disease. In this study we proposed to examine the intracellular expression of IFN-γ, TNF-α, IL-2, IL-10, IL-12, CXCL8, CXCL9 and CXCL10 by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) of patients with the JF and AF of the disease, as well as of PI individuals stimulated with PMA plus ionomycin, LPS or anti-CD3 plus anti-CD28, by flow cytometry. The results showed that PI individuals present a higher percentage of cells producing IFN-γ, TNF-α, IL-2, CXCL9 and CXCL10 when compared to AF and JF patients. IFN-γ was predominantly detected in CD3+CD8+ T cells, whereas IL-2 and TNF-α were mainly expressed in CD3+CD4+ cells. Monocytes of PI individuals also presented higher expression of CD80 and lower expression of CD86 when compared to JF and AF patients, and higher expression of HLA-DR, only when compared to JF patients. These results indicate that the differential production of cytokines and chemokines, as well as the expression of co-stimulatory molecules involved in antigen presentation, may influence the outcome of PCM infection.

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