1887

Abstract

BALB/c mice exposed intranasally (i.n.), intradermally (i.d.) or intraperitoneally (i.p.) to low doses of (20 c.f.u. at three different times two weeks apart) showed an increased resistance to a subsequent high-dose (10 c.f.u.) infection. I.n.-exposed mice had few mycobacteria in the tissues (>100 c.f.u.) and showed an expansion of CD4 T cells associated with overproduction of IL-12 and IFN-γ, but not IL-4 and IgG antibodies. Parenterally (i.p. and i.d.) exposed animals showed c.f.u. numbers higher than i.n.-exposed mice, together with overproduction of IL-12, IFN-γ and IL-4 in the case of i.p.-exposed mice, and of IL-12, IFN-γ and IgG2a and IgG1 antibodies in the case of i.d.-exposed mice. Low-dose exposures were not contained by athymic BALB/c nude mice; however, naive nude mice reconstituted with i.n.-primed CD4 T cells of BALB/c mice were protected against high-dose infection, indicating that CD4 T cells are essential to control even low-dose infections by . Overall, these data suggest that continuous i.n. exposure to doses commonly found in the environment may play a role in determining the natural resistance of normal hosts against this organism.

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2002-10-01
2020-04-07
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