THE IMPACT OF VIRUS INFECTION IN DEREGULATION OF CYTOKINE PRODUCTION UPON SECONDARY BACTERIAL INFECTION
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Dendritic cells (DCs) secrete cytokines such as interleukin-23 (IL-23) when stimulated with certain Toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists and infected with pathogens such as P. aeruginosa. IL-23 is a proinflammatory cytokine that plays a critical role in the proliferation and differentiation of the IL-17 producing Th17- CD4 T helper cells. The lack of efficient cytokine production from antigen-presenting cells, such as DCs, can impact CD4 differentiation and thus impair the immune responses against pathogens. Clearance of some bacterial infections, such as Klebsiella pneumonia and Listeria monocytogenes has been shown to be dependent on the induction of IL-23 and therefore, deregulation of these cytokines as a direct result of virus infection may impede immune responses to secondary infections. Here, an inhibition of TLR ligand or P. aeruginosa-induced IL-23 expression in Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV)-infected bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) has been demonstrated, indicating that an important function of these cells is disrupted during virus/bacterial coinfection. While production of TNF-α was unaffected in LPS stimulated cells, TNF-α was significantly inhibited in bacterium infected cells by LCMV. Type I IFN in LPS or LCMV infected cell was not detected and therefore, ruling out the possibility of cytokine suppression by Type I IFN. The production of IL-10 was high in BMDCs infected with LCMV and stimulated with LPS or bacteria. Analysis of multiple cytokines produced in this coinfection model demonstrated that LCMV infection impacts specific cytokine production upon LPS or bacterium infection, which may be important for bacterial clearance. This data is important for future immunotherapy use in viral/bacterial coinfection scenarios.