The CD28-CD80/CD86-mediated T-cell costimulatory pathway has been variably implicated in infectious immunity. In this study, we investigated the role of this costimulatory pathway in resistance to Trypanosoma cruzi infection by using CD28-deficient mice and blocking antibodies against CD80 and CD86. CD28-deficient mice exhibited markedly exacerbated T. cruzi infection, as evidenced by unrelenting parasitemia and 100% mortality after infection with doses that are nonlethal in wild-type mice. The blockade of both CD80 and CD86 by administering specific monoclonal antibodies also exacerbated T. cruzi infection in wild-type mice. Splenocytes from T. cruzi-infected, CD28-deficient mice exhibited greatly impaired gamma interferon production in response to T. cruzi antigen stimulation in vitro compared to those from infected wild-type mice. The induction of T. cruzi antigen-specific CD8+ T cells was also impaired in T. cruzi-infected, CD28-deficient mice. In addition to these defects in natural protection against T. cruzi infection, CD28-deficient mice were also defective in the induction of CD8+-T-cell-mediated protective immunity against T. cruzi infection by DNA vaccination. These results demonstrate, for the first time, a critical contribution of the CD28-CD80/CD86 costimulatory pathway not only to natural protection against primary T. cruzi infection but also to DNA vaccine-induced protective immunity to Chagas' disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases