Coxiella Burnetii: The 'Query' Fever Bacterium. A Model of Immune Subversion by a Strictly Intracellular Microorganism

FEMS Microbiol Rev. 1997 Apr;19(4):209-17. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6976.1997.tb00298.x.


Although substantial progress occurred in the knowledge of Coxiella burnetii during the past years, the pathophysiology of Q fever is still obscure. Emerging evidence from clinical investigations suggested that certain disorders of cell-mediated immunity play a pivotal role in Q fever and especially in its chronic form. This review analyses the potential strategies that C. burnetii, a strictly intracellular pathogen, use to divert microbicidal mechanisms of macrophages and to depress protective T-cell mediated immunity. The role of monocytes in the induction of Q fever is specifically discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Models, Immunological
  • Q Fever / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology