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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Interleukin-1 inhibits gamma interferon-induced bacteriostasis in human uroepithelial cells.

The most prominent gamma interferon (IFN-gamma)-induced antimicrobial effector mechanisms are the induction of nitric oxide (NO) synthase (NOS) and of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase ( IDO) activity. We have recently found that human glioblastoma cells and human macrophages inhibit the growth of group B streptococci after stimulation with IFN-gamma. In this report, we show that in addition, human RT4 (uroepithelial) cells can inhibit the growth of enterococci. Murine macrophages (RAW cells) are unable to inhibit bacterial growth after IFN-gamma stimulation. Stimulation of human glioblastoma cells, macrophages, and RT4 cells with human IFN-gamma results in a strong expression of IDO activity; however, NO production remains undetectable. In strong contrast, murine RAW cells produce large amounts of NO when stimulated with murine IFN-gamma and IDO activity is not detectable. Interleukin-1 ( IL-1) induces NO synthase in human RT4 cells when the cells are costimulated with IFN-gamma. We found that IL-1 inhibits IFN-gamma- stimulated IDO activity and antimicrobial effects in RT4 cells, while in human glioblastoma cells, which lack detectable NO synthase activity, neither of these effects was altered by costimulation with IFN-gamma and IL-1. The IL-1- mediated inhibition of IDO activity and of subsequent antibacterial effect is due to the production of NO. This conclusion was supported by evidence that N(G)-monomethyl-L-arginine, a competitive inhibitor of inducible NOS activity, is able to block the inhibitory action of IL-1 on IFN-gamma-induced bacteriostasis. We therefore conclude that NO production does not inhibit the growth of enterococci but might be involved in the regulation of IDO activity in some human cells.[1]


  1. Interleukin-1 inhibits gamma interferon-induced bacteriostasis in human uroepithelial cells. Däubener, W., Hucke, C., Seidel, K., Hadding, U., MacKenzie, C.R. Infect. Immun. (1999) [Pubmed]
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