, Volume 85, Issue 2, pp 135-141

Th1-type cytokines improve resistance to murine cysticercosis caused by Taenia crassiceps


Resistance and susceptibility to different parasitic diseases have been associated with the predominance of Th1- or Th2-type immune responses. In experimental murine cysticercosis a Th1 response seems to be involved in resistance, whereas Th2 activity is associated with heavy parasite intensities. To test this notion the roles of Th1- and Th2-type cytokines in infected mice were studied after treatment with anticytokine monoclonal antibodies or with recombinant murine cytokines during early stages of infection. Mice receiving anti-interleukin 10 (IL-10) carried lower parasite intensities than did control mice and developed a strong Th1-type response, whereas mice receiving anti-interferon gamma (IFN-γ) showed a dramatic increase in susceptibility. Treatment with recombinant cytokines confirmed these results; mice receiving IFN-γ and IL-2 showed low parasite numbers, whereas IL-10 induced a significant increase in parasite loads. Thus, the Th1-type immune response plays a fundamental role in protection against Taenia crassiceps cysticercosis, whereas Th2, at least through IL-10, favors parasite establishment.

Received: 29 May 1998 / Accepted: 3 July 1998