Disease susceptibility and development of the cytokine repertoire in the murine Leishmania major model

Eur Cytokine Netw. 1998 Sep;9(3 Suppl):102-6.


The murine Leishmania major model has proven fertile ground for the elucidation of CD4+ T cell effector subset differentiation in vivo. The availability of a highly susceptible inbred strain, BALB/c, that develops progressive disease due to the aberrant differentiation of Th2, as opposed to protective Th1, responses, has allowed the identification of both T cell intrinsic as well as T cell extrinsic properties that combine to mediate disease outcome. The intrinsic T cell phenotype relates to the capacity of BALB/c-derived CD4+ T cells to acquire the potential to secrete IL-4 more readily than cells from other strains of mice. The extrinsic T cell phenotype relates to the creation of a T cell repertoire capable of recognizing the immunodominant parasite antigen. Together, the two traits confer the aberrant response seen in susceptible mice challenged with L. major.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cytokines / biosynthesis*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Disease Susceptibility / immunology
  • Leishmania major / immunology*
  • Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous / genetics
  • Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous / immunology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C


  • Cytokines