Protective roles of T cells and interleukin-15 in Escherichia coli infection in mice

M. Takano, H. Nishimura, Y. Kimura, Y. Mokuno, J. Washizu, S. Itohara, Y. Nimura, Y. Yoshikai

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71 Citations (Scopus)


The number of γδ T cells in the peritoneal cavity was increased after an intraperitoneal (i.p.) infection with Escherichia coil in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-responsive C3H/HeN mice but not in LPS- hyporesponsive C3H/HeJ mice. The γδ T cells preferentially expressed invariant Vγ6 and Vδ1 chains and proliferated to produce a large amount of gamma interferon in the presence of LPS. Mice depleted of γδ T cells by T- cell receptor δ gene mutation showed impaired resistance against E. coil as assessed by bacterial growth. Macrophages from C3H/HeN mice infected with E. coli expressed higher levels of interleukin-15 (IL-15) mRNA than those from the infected C3H/HeJ mice. Administration of anti-IL-15 monoclonal antibody inhibited, albeit partially, the appearance of γδ T cells in C3H/HeN mice after E. coli infection and diminished the host defense against the infection. These results suggest that LPS-stimulated γδ T cells play an important role in the host defense against E. coil infection and that IL-15 may be partly involved in the protection via an increase in the γδ T cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3270-3278
Number of pages9
JournalInfection and Immunity
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1998
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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