Cellular immune reactions directed against Toxoplasma gondii with special emphasis on the central nervous system

Med Microbiol Immunol. 1997 Mar;185(4):195-206. doi: 10.1007/s004300050031.


Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite which, after primary infection of humans, is maintained in a dormant state by the host cellular immune system. In the event of an acquired immunosuppression, those parasites surviving as dormant cysts in the host may undergo a change in status, proliferate and cause a life-threatening toxoplasmic encephalitis. Over the last decade much knowledge has accumulated concerning the immune response against T. gondii. This review focuses attention particularly on the anti-parasitic effector mechanisms and the cellular immune reactions in the central nervous system during the course of reactivated toxoplasmic encephalitis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Astrocytes / immunology
  • Astrocytes / parasitology
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / immunology*
  • Brain / parasitology
  • Cytokines / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular*
  • Microglia / immunology
  • Microglia / parasitology
  • Neuroglia / immunology*
  • Neuroglia / parasitology
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Respiratory Burst
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Toxoplasmosis, Cerebral / immunology*
  • Tryptophan / metabolism


  • Cytokines
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Tryptophan