Cytokine profiles in patients with toxoplasmic lymphadenitis in the setting of pregnancy

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Abstract

Introduction

Majority of Toxoplasma gondii infections are benign and asymptomatic; however, some patients experience toxoplasmic lymphadenitis (TL). Factors associated as to whether infection will be symptomatic or not are unknown.

Methods

Dye test titers of patients with acute toxoplasmosis (pregnant and not pregnant) with TL (TL+) were compared with those in patients with asymptomatic acute infection (TL−). Additionally, mean levels of 62 serum cytokines were compared between TL+ and TL− pregnant women and between TL+ pregnant and non-pregnant women.

Results

During acute infection, mean dye test titer was higher in TL+ than in TL− patients (p = 0.021). In addition, out of 62 cytokines, CXCL9 and CXCL10 levels were higher (p < 0.05) and resistin mean levels were lower (p < 0.05) in pregnant women with TL+ compared to TL−. Among patients with TL+, levels of VCAM1 and CCL2 were lower (p < 0.05) in pregnant women than in non-pregnant women.

Conclusion

Here we report differences in dye test titers in patients with acute infection. Cytokine responses vary according to the presence of TL+ and to the pregnancy status. Factors underlying these differences are presently unknown and require further studies to define individual and combined roles of cytokines in TL+.

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