Letter | Published:

Mechanism of an action of an antibacterial murine lymphokine


THE inactivation and clearing of infectious agents through adaptive immune responses results from interactions between T lymphocytes, B lymphocytes and mononuclear phagocytes1–4. The effector cells in cell-mediated immunity (CMI) are primarily T lymphocytes and mononuclear phagocytes1,5,6. CMI responses appear in two stages, lymphocyte activation with subsequent production of biologically active mediators, and recruitment and activation of other cells (particularly mono-nuclear phagocytes) as a result of the activity of several of these mediators1,3. Collaboration between T lymphocytes and macro-phages in bacterial infections mediated by a lymphokine that causes inhibition of the growth of organisms within the macro-phage has been assayed1,5,8. This inhibition probably results from increased macrophage microbiocidal activity1,5. The subject of this report is a lymphokine that reduces the viability of bacteria. The mechanism of action of this lymphokine is impairment of the ability to divide of otherwise metabolically active bacteria.

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