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      An essential role for interferon gamma in resistance to Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection

      The Journal of Experimental Medicine

      The Rockefeller University Press

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          Abstract

          Tuberculosis, a major health problem in developing countries, has reemerged in recent years in many industrialized countries. The increased susceptibility of immunocompromised individuals to tuberculosis, and many experimental studies indicate that T cell- mediated immunity plays an important role in resistance. The lymphokine interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) is thought to be a principal mediator of macrophage activation and resistance to intracellular pathogens. Mice have been developed which fail to produce IFN-gamma (gko), because of a targeted disruption of the gene for IFN-gamma. Upon infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis, although they develop granulomas, gko mice fail to produce reactive nitrogen intermediates and are unable to restrict the growth of the bacilli. In contrast to control mice, gko mice exhibit heightened tissue necrosis and succumb to a rapid and fatal course of tuberculosis that could be delayed, but not prevented, by treatment with exogenous recombinant IFN-gamma.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          J Exp Med
          The Journal of Experimental Medicine
          The Rockefeller University Press
          0022-1007
          1540-9538
          1 December 1993
          : 178
          : 6
          : 2249-2254
          2191274
          94065595
          7504064
          Categories
          Articles

          Medicine

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