Volume 82, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



People cured from visceral leishmaniasis (VL) develop protection mediated by Th1-type cellular responses against new infections. We evaluated cytokine responses against 6 defined candidate vaccine antigens in 15 cured VL subjects and 5 healthy endemic controls with no evidence of previous exposure to parasites. Of the 6 cytokines examined, only interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) differentiated cured VL patients from non-exposed individuals, with cured patients mounting a significantly higher IFN-γ response to a crude parasite antigen preparation. Among candidate vaccine antigens tested, the largest number of cured subjects recognized cysteine proteinase B, leading to heightened IFN-γ responses, followed by sterol 24-c-methyltransferase. These two antigens were the most immunogenic and protective antigens in a murine VL model, indicating a relationship between T cell recall responses of humans cured from VL and protective efficacy in an experimental model. Further studies may help prioritize antigens for clinical development of a subunit vaccine against VL.


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  • Received : 18 Jun 2009
  • Accepted : 28 Jan 2010
  • Published online : 05 May 2010

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