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Publications (2)21.58 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Staphylococcus aureus skin infections represent a significant public health threat because of the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains such as methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA). As greater understanding of protective immune responses and more effective antimicrobial therapies are needed, a S. aureus skin wound infection model was developed in which full-thickness scalpel cuts on the backs of mice were infected with a bioluminescent S. aureus (methicillin sensitive) or USA300 community-acquired MRSA strain and in vivo imaging was used to noninvasively monitor the bacterial burden. In addition, the infection-induced inflammatory response was quantified using in vivo fluorescence imaging of LysEGFP mice. Using this model, we found that both IL-1α and IL-1β contributed to host defense during a wound infection, whereas IL-1β was more critical during an intradermal S. aureus infection. Furthermore, treatment of a USA300 MRSA skin infection with retapamulin ointment resulted in up to 85-fold reduction in bacterial burden and a 53% decrease in infection-induced inflammation. In contrast, mupirocin ointment had minimal clinical activity against this USA300 strain, resulting in only a 2-fold reduction in bacterial burden. Taken together, this S. aureus wound infection model provides a valuable preclinical screening method to investigate cutaneous immune responses and the efficacy of topical antimicrobial therapies.
    Journal of Investigative Dermatology 12/2010; 131(4):907-15. · 6.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Staphylococcus aureus is the most common cause of skin and soft tissue infections, and rapidly emerging antibiotic-resistant strains are creating a serious public health concern. If immune-based therapies are to be an alternative to antibiotics, greater understanding is needed of the protective immune response against S. aureus infection in the skin. Although neutrophil recruitment is required for immunity against S. aureus, a role for T cells has been suggested. Here, we used a mouse model of S. aureus cutaneous infection to investigate the contribution of T cells to host defense. We found that mice deficient in gammadelta but not alphabeta T cells had substantially larger skin lesions with higher bacterial counts and impaired neutrophil recruitment compared with WT mice. This neutrophil recruitment was dependent upon epidermal Vgamma5+ gammadelta T cell production of IL-17, but not IL-21 and IL-22. Furthermore, IL-17 induction required IL-1, TLR2, and IL-23 and was critical for host defense, since IL-17R-deficient mice had a phenotype similar to that of gammadelta T cell-deficient mice. Importantly, gammadelta T cell-deficient mice inoculated with S. aureus and treated with a single dose of recombinant IL-17 had lesion sizes and bacterial counts resembling those of WT mice, demonstrating that IL-17 could restore the impaired immunity in these mice. Our study defines what we believe to be a novel role for IL-17-producing epidermal gammadelta T cells in innate immunity against S. aureus cutaneous infection.
    The Journal of clinical investigation 04/2010; 120(5):1762-73. · 15.39 Impact Factor