The interaction of human macrophages with the yeast form of the thermally dimorphic fungal pathogen, , was studied. Macrophages derived from monocytes by culture for 3 days ingested , but were neither fungicidal or fungistatic. In contrast, when monocytes were exposed to human recombinant gamma-interferon (γ-IFN) during their differentiation into macrophages, those macrophages were able to reduce the number of ingested or adherent cfu of by 44-75% in 2 h. Activation of macrophages for fungicidal activity by γ-IFN was dose dependent and 500-1000 units ml were optimal. Antibody to γ-IFN abrogated the γ-IFN activation process. Killing of by activated macrophages in 2-h assays could be inhibited by superoxide dismutase but not by sodium azide.


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