Author(s): Lisi S, Sisto M, Acquafredda A, Spinelli R, Schiavone M,
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Abstract Modulation of host cell apoptosis has been observed in many bacterial, protozoal, and viral infections. The aim of this work was to investigate the effect of viscerotropic Leishmania (L.) infantum infection on actinomycin D-induced apoptosis of the human monocytic cell line U-937. Cells were infected with L. infantum promastigotes or treated with the surface molecule lipophosphoglycan (LPG) or with parasite-free supernatant of Leishmania culture medium and submitted to action of actinomycin D as the apoptosis-inducing agent. Actinomycin D-induced apoptosis in U-937 cells was inhibited in the presence of both viable L. infantum promastigotes and soluble factors contained in Leishmania culture medium or purified LPG. Leishmania infantum affected the survival of U-937 cells via a mechanism involving inhibition of caspase-3 activation. Furthermore, protein kinase C delta (PKC delta) cleavage was increased in actinomycin D-treated U-937 cells and was inhibited by the addition of LPG. Thus, inhibition of the PKC-mediated pathways by LPG can be implicated in the enhanced survival of the parasites. These results support the claim that promastigotes of L. infantum, as well as its surface molecule, LPG, which is in part released in the culture medium, inhibit macrophage apoptosis, thus allowing intracellular parasite survival and replication.
This article was published in J Eukaryot Microbiol
and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology