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Lymphocyte Functional Crosstalk and Regulation

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Front. Immunol. | doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2019.00670

Cytokines: Key determinants of resistance or disease progression in visceral leishmaniasis: Opportunities for novel diagnostics and immunotherapy

  • 1Indrashil University, India
  • 2University of Hyderabad, India
  • 3University of Arizona, United States
  • 4Pennsylvania State University, United States

Leishmaniasis is a parasitic disease of humans, highly prevalent in parts of the tropics, subtropics, and southern Europe. The disease mainly occurs in three different clinical forms namely cutaneous, mucocutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis (VL). The VL affects several internal organs and is the deadliest form of the disease. Epidemiology and clinical manifestations of VL are variable based on the vector, parasite (e.g. species, strains, and antigen diversity), host (e.g. genetic background, nutrition, diversity in antigen presentation and immunity) and the environment (e.g. temperature, humidity, and hygiene). Chemotherapy of VL is limited to a few drugs which is expensive and associated with profound toxicity, and could become ineffective due to the parasites developing resistance. Till date, there are no licensed vaccines for humans against leishmaniasis. Recently, immunotherapy has become an attractive strategy as it is cost-effective, causes limited side-effects and do not suffer from the downside of pathogens developing resistance. Among various immunotherapeutic approaches, cytokines (produced by helper T-lymphocytes) based immunotherapy has received great attention especially for drug refractive cases of human VL. Therefore, a comprehensive knowledge on the molecular interactions of immune cells or components and on cytokines interplay in the host defense or pathogenesis is important to determine appropriate immunotherapies for leishmaniasis. Here, we summarized the current understanding of a wide-spectrum of cytokines and their interaction with immune cells that determine the clinical outcome of leishmaniasis. We have also highlighted opportunities for the development of novel diagnostics and intervention therapies for VL.

Keywords: Leishmania,, Cytokines, T-cells,, T-cells, , Visceral leishmaniasis, diagnosis, Immunotherapy

Received: 22 Sep 2018; Accepted: 12 Mar 2019.

Edited by:

Raghvendra M. Srivastava, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, United States

Reviewed by:

Jitendra K. Tripathi, University of North Dakota, United States
Anil Dangi, Duke University Medical Center, United States  

Copyright: © 2019 Kalangi, ALTI, Sambamurthy and Kuchipudi. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Suresh K. Kalangi, Indrashil University, Rajpur, India,