Immune-suppressive factors (ISFs) introduced into larvae of Drosophila melanogaster during infection by virulent endoparasitic wasps effectively block the innate immune response mediated by blood cells (hemocytes) but have little influence on the autoimmune response made by a tumor strain in which the blood cells manifest a similar response but instead target and destroy endogenous tissues. Quantitative hemocyte analyses indicate that ISFs interfere with the immune effector responses downstream of nonself recognition, hemocyte activation and differentiation, because these responses were manifested by tumor hosts, in which the parasitoids developed. The data suggest that once activated to encapsulate aberrant tissues, the target specificity of the autoimmune-activated hemocytes, and the genetic program underlying tumor formation, cannot be blocked by parasitoid-derived ISFs, which effectively inhibit identical hemocyte-mediated responses during parasitization.

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