Effect of Interferons on the Activation of Murine Peritoneal Macrophages to Inhibit the Growth of Listeria Monocytogenes

  • Alison M. Badger
  • Barbara A. Swift
  • Barbara J. Dalton
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 239)


Peritoneal macrophages are activated to become antimicrobial in vivo by infection with intracellular parasites (1,2) or in vitro by lymphokine-containing lymphocyte supernatants (3–7). One component of these mitogen stimulated lymphocyte supernatants, gamma interferon (IFN-γ), has been shown to be responsible for the ability of lymphokine supernatants to activate a variety of macrophage functions, including microbicidal and tumoricidal activity. However, there do appear to be non-interferon components of these supernatants that can render macrophages to become microbicidal (8). Izadkhah et al. (9) first demonstrated that treatment of mice with sera containing IFN-γ was able to increase the survival of mice infected with Salmonella typhimurium. More recent studies with pure and recombinant murine IFN-γ (rMuIFN-γ) have demonstrated that this lymphokine can indeed activate macrophages to inhibit the growth of (or kill) several intracellular parasites. IFN-γ treatment (both in vitro and in vivo) inhibits the intracellular protozoa Toxoplasma gondii (10,11) and Leishmania donovani (12) and the in vivo growth of Listera monocytogenes (13). A recent report indicates that the in vivo production of IFN-γ is required for the clearance of Listeria in infected mice (14). In human studies IFN-γ has been shown to activate peripheral monocytes to kill Toxoplasma gondii (15) and Leishmania donovani in vitro (12, 16) and a recent study describes the enhanced capacity of these cells to kill Listeria (17).


Peritoneal Macrophage Gamma Interferon Listeria Monocytogenes Mouse Peritoneal Macrophage Peritoneal Exudate Cell 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alison M. Badger
    • 1
  • Barbara A. Swift
    • 1
  • Barbara J. Dalton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Immunology and Anti-Infective TherapySmith Kline and French LaboratoriesSwedelandUSA

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