Epidemiological and experimental evidence for sex-dependent differences in the outcome of Leishmania infantum Infection
American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Leishmania infantum causes visceral leishmaniasis (VL) in Brazil. We previously observed that VL is more common in males than females living in endemic neighborhoods, despite similar exposure. Using a larger sample, we document that VL is more common in males than females, but only after puberty. BALB/c and C57BL/6 mouse models confirmed that there is a biological basis for male susceptibility to symptomatic VL, showing higher parasite burdens in males than females. Female C57BL/6 mice generated more antigen-induced cytokines associated with curative responses (interferon-ã, interleukin [IL]-1β). Males expressed higher levels of IL-10 and tumor necrosis factor, which are linked to exacerbated disease. Different parasite lines entered or survived at a higher rate in macrophages of male-than female-origin. These results suggest that males are inherently more susceptible to L. infantum than females and that mice are a valid model to study this sex-dependent difference.
Department of Biology
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DOI of published version
UNI ScholarWorks, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa
Rodriguez, Nilda E.; Lima, Iraci D.; Dixit, Upasna Gaur; Turcotte, Elizabeth A.; Lockard, Ryan D.; Batra-Sharma, Hemali; Nascimento, Eliana L.; Jeronimo, Selma M.B.; and Wilson, Mary E., "Epidemiological and experimental evidence for sex-dependent differences in the outcome of Leishmania infantum Infection" (2018). Faculty Publications. 803.