Reduced interleukin-12 and transforming growth factor-beta1 in severe childhood malaria: relationship of cytokine balance with disease severity.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Interleukin (IL)-12 and transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1 regulate the balance between pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines in animal models of malaria. Since the cytokine balance may be an important determinant of whether a protective or a pathogenic immune response develops, plasma cytokine ratios were examined in Gabonese children with various degrees of malarial severity. Severe disease was characterized by high-density parasitemia and severe anemia. IL-12 and TGF-beta1 were significantly lower, whereas tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha and IL-10 were significantly higher in children with severe malaria. The ratios of TGF-beta1/IL-12 and IL-10/IL-12 were significantly higher in the severe, compared with the mild, malaria group. In contrast, ratios of TGF-beta1/TNF-alpha and IL-10/TNF-alpha were significantly lower in the severe malaria group. These results suggest that the inflammatory cascade in severe malaria is characterized by suppression of the protective effects of TGF-beta1 and IL-12, and that overproduction of TNF-alpha may promote deleterious effects, such as severe anemia.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Perkins, DJ; Weinberg, JB; Kremsner, PG

Published Date

  • September 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 182 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 988 - 992

PubMed ID

  • 10950804

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-1899

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1086/315762


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States