PLoS Pathog. 2014 Jun 12;10(6):e1004203. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004203. eCollection 2014.
Toxoplasma gondii Profilin Promotes Recruitment of Ly6Chi CCR2+ Inflammatory Monocytes That Can Confer Resistance to Bacterial Infection
Ly6C+ inflammatory monocytes are essential to host defense against Toxoplasma gondii, Listeria monocytogenes and other infections. During T. gondii infection impaired inflammatory monocyte emigration results in severe inflammation and failure to control parasite replication. However, the T. gondii factors that elicit these monocytes are unknown. Early studies from the Remington laboratory showed that mice with a chronic T. gondii infection survive lethal co-infections with unrelated pathogens, including L. monocytogenes, but a mechanistic analysis was not performed. Here we report that this enhanced survival against L. monocytogenes is due to early reduction of bacterial burdens and elicitation of Ly6C+ inflammatory monocytes. We demonstrate that a single TLR11/TLR12 ligand profilin (TgPRF) was sufficient to reduce bacterial burdens similar to T. gondii chronic infection. Stimulation with TgPRF was also sufficient to enhance animal survival when administered either pre- or post-Listeria infection. The ability of TgPRF to reduce L. monocytogenes burdens was dependent on TLR11 and required IFN-γ but was not dependent on IL-12 signaling. TgPRF induced rapid production of MCP-1 and resulted in trafficking of Ly6Chi CCR2+ inflammatory monocytes and Ly6G+ neutrophils into the blood and spleen. Stimulation with TgPRF reduced L. monocytogenes burdens in mice depleted with the Ly6G specific MAb 1A8, but not in Ly6C/Ly6G specific RB6-8C5 depleted or CCR2-/- mice, indicating that only inflammatory monocytes are required for TgPRF-induced reduction in bacterial burdens. These results demonstrate that stimulation of TLR11 by TgPRF is a mechanism to promote the emigration of Ly6Chi CCR2+ monocytes, and that TgPRF recruited inflammatory monocytes can provide an immunological benefit against an unrelated pathogen.
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