Altered monocyte function in uremia

Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1990 Jul;56(1):66-80. doi: 10.1016/0090-1229(90)90170-u.


Uremia appears to suppress immune function predisposing patients to infections. When the defect in cellular immunity was studied by exposing mononuclear cells (MNC) from uremic patients and controls to tetanus toxoid, diptheria toxoid, or Candida albicans antigen in vitro, the uremic cells were far less responsive. Monocytes and T cells, which are both involved in the proliferative response to soluble antigens, were isolated from MNC of uremic patients and HLA class II matched controls and incubated with tetanus toxoid. Tetanus toxoid-pulsed uremic monocytes were unable to stimulate the proliferation of HLA identical control T lymphocytes. Lymphocytes from uremic patients, however, were stimulated by tetanus toxoid-pulsed control monocytes. Therefore, the ability of monocytes to function as accessory cells is severely affected by uremia. The uremic monocytes were FcR+, produced IL-1 beta, and expressed levels of HLA class II antigens comparable to controls. Although the biochemical defect in uremic monocytes remains unknown, the abnormality could explain many of the immunological changes of uremia.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Candida albicans / immunology
  • Child
  • Diphtheria Toxin / immunology
  • Female
  • HLA-D Antigens / biosynthesis
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1 / biosynthesis
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monocytes / immunology*
  • Receptors, Fc / biosynthesis
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Tetanus Toxoid / immunology
  • Uremia / immunology*


  • Diphtheria Toxin
  • HLA-D Antigens
  • Interleukin-1
  • Receptors, Fc
  • Tetanus Toxoid