Franca C. Hartgers

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Chronic helminth infections induce strong type 2 and regulatory immune responses and are known to influence immune activity to other antigens such as allergens and vaccines. Since malaria and helminth infections often coincide geographically in the same tropical regions, the question arises whether helminth infections modulate the immune responses towards(More)
Dendritic cells form a system of highly efficient antigen-presenting cells. After capturing antigen in the periphery, they migrate to lymphoid organs where they present the antigen to T cells. Their seemingly unique ability to interact with and sensitize naive T cells gives dendritic cells a central role in the initiation of immune responses and allows them(More)
Expression of the transcription factor Foxp3 (forkhead box P3) has been implicated as a key element for CD25(+) T regulatory cell function in mice. However, literature over similar involvement of FOXP3 expression in human T regulatory cells is limited. We found that, unlike murine cells, FOXP3 mRNA expression could be induced in human CD25(-) and CD8(+)(More)
Worldwide, more than a billion people are infected with helminths. These worm infections generally do not lead to mortality, however, they are chronic in nature and can lead to considerable morbidity. Immunologically these infections are interesting; chronic helminth infections are characterized by skewing towards a T helper 2 type response as well as(More)
The statistical analysis of immunological data may be complicated because precise quantitative levels cannot always be determined. Values below a given detection limit may not be observed (nondetects), and data with nondetects are called left-censored. Since nondetects cannot be considered as missing at random, a statistician faced with data containing(More)
Malaria and helminth infections have a shared geographical distribution and therefore co-infections are frequent in tropical areas of the world. Human populations of helminth and malaria co-infection have shown contradictory results for the course of malarial infection and disease, possibly depending on the type of helminth studied, the intensity of(More)
BACKGROUND Epidemiological data on food allergy are scarce in African countries. We studied the prevalence of food sensitization in Ghanaian schoolchildren. METHODS Children (5-16 years; n = 1,714) from 9 Ghanaian schools were given parental consent to participate in the study. Adverse reactions and food consumption were determined by a questionnaire and(More)
Developed countries are suffering from an epidemic rise in immunologic disorders, such as allergy-related diseases and certain autoimmunities. Several studies have demonstrated a negative association between helminth infections and inflammatory diseases (eg, allergy), providing a strong case for the involvement of helminth infections in this respect.(More)
To determine mechanisms of neonatal parasite antigen (Ag)-specific immune suppression associated with placental Plasmodium falciparum infection, we isolated cord blood mononuclear cells (CBMCs) from Gabonese neonates born to mothers with differing histories of P. falciparum infection and performed ex vivo and in vitro studies to evaluate immune regulatory(More)
Recognition of pathogens by dendritic cells (DCs) through interaction with pattern recognition receptors, including Toll like receptors (TLR), is crucial for the initiation of appropriate polarized T helper (Th) cell responses. Yet, the characteristics and differences in molecular profiles of DCs with different T cell polarizing capacities are still poorly(More)