Human monocytes/macrophage inflammatory cytokine changes following in vivo and in vitro Schistomam manoni infection

Mistire Wolde*, Lisa C. Laan, Girmay Medhin, Endalemaw Gadissa, Nega Berhe, Aster Tsegaye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Introduction: Epidemiological and animal studies indicate that helminth infections have positive effects due to their potential to protect against autoimmune diseases. Here, we aim to assess the effect of S. mansoni infection on immune modulation of human monocytes and their potential protection against autoimmune disease development both in vivo and in vitro. Materials and Methods: Monocytes were isolated from helminth-infected Ethiopians (MHIE), and from Dutch healthy volunteers (MHV). The MHV were stimulated in vitro with S. mansoni soluble egg antigens (SEA) or soluble worm antigens (SWA). In addition, phenotypical changes were studied directly, as well as after culturing for 6 days in the presence of human serum to obtain macrophages. Q-PCR, flow cytometry, multiplex bead immunoassay, and live-cell imaging were employed during analysis. Results: MHIE showed elevated transcripts of SOCS-1 and TNF-α compared to MHV. Similarly, MHV that were stimulated with SEA demonstrated enhanced levels of SOCS-1, IL-10, and IL-12 mRNA, compared to control MHV. Remarkably, the SEA-treated monocytes showed a much higher motility than control monocytes, a hallmark of a patrolling phenotype. Furthermore, in vitro cultured macrophages that were stimulated by SEA exhibited enhanced mRNA levels of SOCS-1, IL-10, TNF-α, IL-12 and TGF-β, compared to control macrophages. Conclusion: Macrophages from MHIE as well as SEA-treated MHV show an intermediate activation phenotype with both pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory characteristics in vitro. The observed pro-inflammatory properties might reflect a recent response of the cells due to contact with a pathogen, whereas the anti-inflammatory properties might contribute to helminth-induced protection against inflammatory diseases. Large-scale study is recommended to consolidate the findings of the present study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-43
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Inflammation Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020

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