Role of IL-5 in innate and adaptive immunity to larval Strongyloides stercoralis in mice

D. R. Herbert, J. J. Lee, N. A. Lee, T. J. Nolan, G. A. Schad, D. Abraham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

94 Scopus citations


Protective immunity to Strongyloides stercoralis infective larvae in mice has been shown to be dependent on IL-5 based on mAb depletion studies. The goal of this study was to determine the functional role of IL-5 during the innate and adaptive immune response to larval S. stercoralis in mice. In these studies, three strains of mice were used: wild-type C57BL/6J (WT), IL-5 knockout (KO), and IL-5 transgenic (TG). Innate responses to the larvae indicated that there was enhanced survival in the KO animals and decreased survival in the TG animals compared with WT. Furthermore, killing of larvae in TG mice was associated with eosinophil infiltration and degranulation. In studying the adaptive immune response, it was observed that immunization of KO mice did not lead to the development of protective immunity. Experiments were then performed to determine whether KO mice reconstituted with Abs or cells could then develop protective immunity. KO mice displayed protective immunity via a granulocyte-dependent mechanism following injection of purified IgM from immune wild-type animals. Immunity in KO mice could also be reconstituted by the injection of eosinophils at the time of immunization. These eosinophils did not participate in actively killing the challenge infection, but rather were responsible for the induction of a protective Ab response. We conclude that IL-5 is required in the protective immune response for the production of eosinophils, and that eosinophils were involved in larval killing during innate immunity and in the induction of protective Abs in the adaptive immune response.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4544-4551
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 15 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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