• T J Birdi

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • An indomethacin sensitive suppressor factor released by macrophages of leprosy patients

      T J Birdi P R Salgame P R Mahadevan N H Antia

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      Reduction inFc receptor expression as assayed by ‘erythrocyte’ rosetting of macrophage cultures from long term treated lepromatous leprosy patients (bactereologically negative) was seen in the presence of viableMycobacterium leprae. Macrophages with and without intracellular bacilli demonstrated this reduction. On the basis of this observation the conditioned medium ofMycobacterium leprae infected macrophage cultures of lepromatous patients, were tested on macrophages from normal individuals for [3H]-leucine incorporation and antigen specific physical interaction with lymphocytes. Both these parameters showed decreased values as compared to the controls which were not exposed to this conditioned medium. Lymphocyte transformation toMycobacterium leprae in leucocyte cultures of normal individuals was also reduced in the presence of the conditioned medium from lepromatous patients’ macrophages. The indication that this factor may be a prostaglandin was suggested by the observation that its synthesis was inhibited by indomethacin. Its importance in the non-specific depression in cell-mediated immunity seen in lepromatous patients is discussed.

    • In vitro tests for screening of immuno-modulating mycobacterial strains in leprosy

      T J Birdi P R Salgama H Bharucha N H Antia

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      There is an urgent need for the development of anin vitro assay for the initial screening of a large number of organisms from which potential candidates as vaccines can be identified. Our previous studies have demonstrated a crucial defect in the lepromatous macrophage. In this study by monitoring this defective macrophage response we have screened various mycobacteria for their ability to reverse the alterations induced byMycobacterium leprae. Among the limited Mycobacteria testedMycobacterium vaccae appears to be the most promising as an immunomodulator. Our results also indicate the need for caution in using the mouse model for this purpose

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