This study examined the effects of burn injury on murine immune response against Toxoplasma gondii infection. Male C57BL/6 mice were divided into 3 groups: T. gondii infection (group T), burn injury (group B), and burn injury followed by T. gondii infection (group BT). The survival of group BT was significantly lower than those of group B and group T. Parasite abundance in the tissues was determined by quantitative competitive-polymerase chain reaction. Group BT exhibited significantly higher numbers of T. gondii than group T. Antibody production against T.g.HSP30 in group BT was significantly lower than that in group T, whereas no significant difference was observed in SAG1-specific antibody production. Delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) specific for 2,4-dinitrofluorobenzene (DNFB) of both group B and group BT was significantly lower than that of group T. One week after infection, serum interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) and interleukin (IL)-10 levels in group BT were significantly lower, whereas serum IL-6 levels were significantly higher than in group T. Serum TNF-α levels in both group T and group BT were elevated at 1 wk after infection, although there was no significant difference between them. Serum IFN-γ, IL-10, and TNF-α levels in group B were not elevated during the experimental term. In conclusion, the impaired antigen-specific antibody production and DTH response, together with the modulated patterns of cytokine responses, seemed to be strongly involved in the development of burn-induced immunosuppression and the consequent increased susceptibility to T. gondii infection in mice.

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