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CD1d-restricted natural killer T (NKT) cells are innate-like lymphocytes that express a conserved T-cell receptor and contribute to host defence against various microbial pathogens. However, their target lipid antigens have remained elusive. Here we report evidence for microbial, antigen-specific activation of NKT cells against Gram-negative,(More)
OBJECTIVE Infection triggers inflammation that, in turn, enhances the expression of contractile-associated factors in myometrium and increases the risk of preterm delivery. In this study, we assessed vitamin D regulation of inflammatory markers, contractile-associated factors, steroid hormone receptors, and NFκB pathway proteins in human uterine myometrial(More)
We describe an ELISPOT technique for the detection of antigen specific IFNgamma-producing T cells. The technique is performed on spleen cells plated directly ex vivo into ELISPOT trays without an in vitro pre-culture step. Thus, the assay is likely to reflect the in vivo activity of the cells. We have found that very high cell densities (at least 10(6)(More)
The occurrence of infectious disease represents a failure of the immune system, a failure that must be prevented by effective vaccination or remedied by treatment. Vaccination against acute diseases such as smallpox and polio are very effective, due to the rapid and increased immune response of vaccinated individuals upon natural infection. In contrast,(More)
We tested the independence hypothesis, namely that the Th1/Th2 nature of concurrent immune responses, generated in the same secondary lymphoid organ to non-cross-reacting Ags, can be independently determined. Some infectious agents and some adjuvants contain modulatory molecules that affect the Th1/Th2 nature of immune responses in a non-Ag-specific manner.(More)
The interaction between intracellular pathogens and the mammalian host follows different pathways that reflect evolved survival mechanisms of both the pathogen and the host to assure each one's own survival. From the host's perspective, different immune mechanisms predominate at different stages of infection. Both phagocytic and non-phagocytic target cells(More)
Cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs), associated with Th1 responses, are the most important mediators of resistance against most tumors. We argue that most murine tumors grow progressively when a significant Th2 component to their immune response develops, which is associated with the downregulation of the CTL response. We outline recent evidence that strongly(More)
Mechanisms controlling the Th1 / Th2 phenotype of a primary immune response are often discussed assuming that the generation of Th1 and Th2 cells from the common CD4(+) precursor T helper (pTh) involves an interaction of this pTh cell with an antigen-presenting cell (APC) in the form of a two-cell interaction. Other studies suggest that the outcome of this(More)
It has been proposed that the degree of an antigen's foreignness is important in determining the Th1/Th2 phenotype of the immune response it generates. We test this hypothesis here and partially dissect the underlying mechanism. Immunization of C57BL/6 and hen egg lysozyme (HEL)-transgenic mice, tolerant to HEL at the T-cell level, with low doses of sheep(More)
Rickettsiae cause some of the most severe human infections, including epidemic typhus and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Substantial progress has been made in research into the genomics, vector relationships, pathogenesis and immunity of these obligate, intracellular, arthropod-transmitted bacteria. This Review summarizes our understanding of the early and(More)