[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The first line drugs for the treatment of leishmaniasis are antimonial derivatives. Poor clinical response may be credited to factors linked to the host, the drug, or the parasite. We determined the sensitivity of Leishmania sp. promastigotes and amastigotes by counting parasites exposed to increasing concentrations of meglumine antimoniate (Glucantime). Leishmania braziliensis promastigotes were significantly more sensitive than those belonging to other species. The sensitivity of L. braziliensis isolates from patients with unfavorable clinical outcome, such as therapeutic failure or relapse, was significantly lower than those from patients who had clinical cure. Poor clinical response to therapy (therapeutic failure or relapse) was also associated with inadequate antimonial therapy. We also found a significant and positive correlation between promastigotes and intracellular amastigotes with regard to their in vitro susceptibilities to meglumine antimoniate. Our data provide evidence for an association between the sensitivity of promastigotes to antimonials in vitro and clinical response to therapy in American tegumentary leishmaniasis. The high sensitivity of the local L. braziliensis to meglumine antimoniate in vitro provides an explanation for the good clinical response of cutaneous leishmaniasis in the municipality of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, even when low-dose regimens are employed.
Journal of Parasitology 07/2007; 93(3):688-93. · 1.32 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tegumentary leishmaniasis and leprosy display similar spectra of disease phenotypes, which are dependent on cell-mediated immunity to specific antigens. Diffuse cutaneous leishmaniasis and lepromatous leprosy represent the anergic end of the spectrum, whereas mucocutaneous leishmaniasis and tuberculoid leprosy are associated with marked antigen-specific cellular immune response.
We characterized and compared the cell-mediated response to Leishmania and Mycobacterium leprae antigens in a patient with an intriguing association of mucocutaneous leishmaniasis with lepromatous leprosy, which are at opposite ends of the immunopathological spectra of these diseases. This was done by performance of skin tests and by assessment of the cell proliferation and cytokine production of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs).
Strong skin-test reactions and PBMC proliferation were observed in response to Leishmania antigens but not to M. leprae antigens. The stimulation of PBMCs with Leishmania and M. leprae antigens induced comparable levels of tumor necrosis factor- alpha , interleukin-5, and interleukin-10. However, the interferon- gamma response to Leishmania antigens was remarkably high, and that to M. leprae antigens was almost nil.
We found that concomitant leprosy and tegumentary leishmaniasis can produce opposite polar forms associated, respectively, with absent or exaggerated cell-mediated immune responses to each pathogen. This suggests that independent mechanisms influence the clinical outcome of each infection. Moreover, interferon- gamma appears to play a major role in the clinical expression of these intracellular infections.