Regulatory T cells in human geohelminth infection suppress immune responses to BCG and Plasmodium falciparum

Linda J. Wammes, Firdaus Hamid, Aprilianto E. Wiria, Brechje De Gier, Erliyani Sartono, Rick M. Maizels, Adrian J F Luty, Yvonne Fillié, Gary T. Brice, Taniawati Supali, Hermelijn H. Smits, Maria Yazdanbakhsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

118 Citations (Scopus)


Chronic helminth infections induce T-cell hyporesponsiveness, which may affect immune responses to other pathogens or to vaccines. This study investigates the influence of Treg activity on proliferation and cytokine responses to BCG and Plasmodium falciparum-parasitized RBC in Indonesian schoolchildren. Geohelminth-infected children's in vitro T-cell proliferation to either BCG or pRBC was reduced compared to that of uninfected children. Although the frequency of CD4+CD25hiFOXP3+ T cells was similar regardless of infection status, the suppressive activity differed between geohelminth-infected and geohelminthuninfected groups: Ag-specific proliferative responses increased upon CD4+CD25 hi T-cell depletion in geohelminth-infected subjects only. In addition, IFN-γ production in response to both BCG and parasitized RBC was increased after removal of CD4+CD25hi T cells. These data demonstrate that geohelminth-associated Treg influence immune responses to bystander Ag of mycobacteria and plasmodia. Geohelminth-induced immune modulation may have important consequences for co-endemic infections and vaccine trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)437-442
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


  • Coinfection
  • FOXP3
  • Geohelminths
  • Treg
  • Vaccination


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