Article

Medroxyprogesterone Acetate Alters Mycobacterium Bovis BCG-Induced Cytokine Production in Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells of Contraceptive Users

Division of Molecular Biology and Human Genetics, MRC Centre for Molecular and Cellular Biology, DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research, Faculty of Health Sciences, Stellenbosch University, Tygerberg, South Africa.
PLoS ONE (Impact Factor: 3.53). 09/2011; 6(9):e24639. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0024639
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Most individuals latently infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb) contain the infection by a balance of effector and regulatory immune responses. This balance can be influenced by steroid hormones such as glucocorticoids. The widely used contraceptive medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) possesses glucocorticoid activity. We investigated the effect of this hormone on immune responses to BCG in household contacts of active TB patients. Multiplex bead array analysis revealed that MPA demonstrated both glucocorticoid and progestogenic properties at saturating and pharmacological concentrations in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and suppressed antigen specific cytokine production. Furthermore we showed that PBMCs from women using MPA produced significantly lower levels of IL-1α, IL-12p40, IL-10, IL-13 and G-CSF in response to BCG which corresponded with lower numbers of circulating monocytes observed in these women. Our research study is the first to show that MPA impacts on infections outside the genital tract due to a systemic effect on immune function. Therefore MPA use could alter susceptibility to TB, TB disease severity as well as change the efficacy of new BCG-based vaccines, especially prime-boost vaccine strategies which may be administered to adult or adolescent women in the future.

Full-text

Available from: Andre Loxton, Apr 19, 2015
1 Follower
 · 
163 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Objectives The potential effect of hormonal contraception on HIV-1 acquisition and transmission represents an important public health issue. Several observational studies have suggested an association between the use of hormonal contraception, in particular injectable depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), and an increased risk of HIV-1 acquisition and transmission. We and others have previously demonstrated that DMPA acts as a potent inhibitor of innate and adaptive immune mechanisms. The study presented here addresses the immunomodulatory properties of several common progestins with a potential to replace DMPA. Study design To identify safe alternatives to DMPA, we tested the effect of commonly used progestins on the function of human primary T cells and plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) obtained from the blood of healthy premenopausal women. Results Medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) inhibited the activation of T cells and pDCs in response to T cell receptor and Toll-like receptor (TLR)-mediated activation at physiological concentrations. Etonogestrel (ETG) exerted a partial suppressive activity at high concentrations. In sharp contrast, norethisterone (NET) and levonorgestrel (LNG) did not exhibit detectable immunosuppressive activity. Conclusion Evidence indicating the immunosuppressive properties of DMPA strongly suggests that DMPA should be discontinued and replaced with other forms of long-term contraception. Since NET and LNG do not exert immunosuppressive properties at physiological concentrations, these progestins should be considered as alternative contraceptives for women at high risk of HIV-1 infection. Implications The presented data suggest that, at physiological levels, the progestins NET and LNG do not suppress cytokine production by immune cells and should be considered as alternatives to DMPA; however, more in vivo testing is needed to confirm this data.
    Contraception 08/2014; 90(2). DOI:10.1016/j.contraception.2014.02.006 · 2.93 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Whether hormonal contraceptives increase HIV-1 acquisition, transmission and disease progression are critical questions. Clinical research has been hampered by a lack of understanding that different progestins used in contraception exhibit differential off-target effects via steroid receptors other than the progesterone receptor. Of particular, relevance is the relative effects of medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) and norethisterone enanthate (NET-EN), widely used as injectable contraceptives in sub-Saharan Africa. While most high-quality clinical studies find no increased risk for HIV-1 acquisition with oral contraception or injectable NET-EN, most do find an increase with MPA, particularly in young women. Furthermore, mounting evidence from animal, ex vivo and biochemical studies are consistent with MPA acting to increase HIV-1 acquisition and pathogenesis, via mechanisms involving glucocorticoid-like effects on gene expression, in particular genes involved in immune function. We report that MPA, unlike NET and progesterone, represses inflammatory genes in human PBMCs in a dose-dependent manner, via the glucocorticoid receptor (GR), at concentrations within the physiologically relevant range. These and published results collectively suggest that the differential GR activity of MPA versus NET may be a mechanism whereby MPA, unlike NET or progesterone, differentially modulates HIV-1 acquisition and pathogenesis in target cells where the GR is the predominant steroid receptor expressed.
    American Journal Of Reproductive Immunology 02/2014; DOI:10.1111/aji.12214 · 3.32 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The contraceptive depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), with progestin as the single active compound, possesses selective glucocorticoid activity and can alter the expression of glucocorticoid receptor-regulated genes. We therefore propose that pharmacological doses of DMPA used for endocrine therapy could have significant immune modulatory effects and impact on susceptibility to, as well as clinical manifestation and outcome of, infectious diseases. We investigated the effect of contraceptive doses of DMPA in two different murine Mycobacterium tuberculosis models. Multiplex bead array analysis revealed that DMPA altered serum cytokine levels of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF), and interleukin 10 (IL-10) in C57BL/6 mice and gamma interferon (IFN-γ) in BALB/c mice. DMPA also suppressed antigen-specific production of TNF-α, G-CSF, IL-10, and IL-6 and induced the production of IP-10 in C57BL/6 mice. In BALB/c mice, DMPA altered the antigen-specific secretion of IFN-γ, IL-17, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), IL-6, and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (MCP-1). Furthermore, we show that C57BL/6 mice treated with doses of DMPA, which result in serum concentrations similar to those observed in contraceptive users, have a significantly higher bacterial load in their lungs. Our data show for the first time that DMPA impacts tuberculosis (TB) disease severity in a mouse model and that the effects of this contraceptive are not confined to infections of the genital tract. This could have major implications for the contraceptive policies not only in developing countries like South Africa but also worldwide.
    Infection and immunity 04/2013; 81(4):1234–1244. DOI:10.1128/IAI.01189-12 · 4.16 Impact Factor