Altered inflammatory responses following transforming growth factor-beta neutralization in experimental guinea pig tuberculous pleurisy. Academic Article uri icon


  • The predominant extrapulmonary form of tuberculosis, which develops in 10% of diseased individuals, is pleurisy. The immune response mounted against Mycobacterium tuberculosis in the pleural cavity is one that is sufficient for clearing the organism without therapeutic intervention. Thus, examining the role of immune constituents in this context will provide understanding of the vital role they play in controlling tuberculosis. In this study, experimental tuberculous pleurisy was induced in guinea pigs, and anti-TGF-beta was administered intrapleurally to the guinea pigs daily throughout the study (8 days). Neutralizing TGF-beta resulted in a significant reduction in the percentage of lymphocytes and CD8+ cells present in the pleural exudate, decreased proliferative responses of pleural cells to ConA and PPD, and decreased mRNA expression of IFN-gamma and CCL5 in pleural effusion cells. Conversely, the percentage of neutrophils was significantly increased in anti-TGF-beta-treated guinea pigs, along with upregulated mRNA expression of CXCL8. The percentage of macrophages in the pleural exudate, TNF-alpha and IL-12p40 mRNA expression, and the histopathological response were not significantly altered. While TGF-beta is generally thought of as an immunosuppressive cytokine, the results of this study demonstrate its importance in promoting an inflammatory response, and highlight its bipolar nature.

published proceedings

  • Tuberculosis (Edinb)

author list (cited authors)

  • Allen, S. S., Mackie, J. T., Russell, K., Jeevan, A., Skwor, T. A., & McMurray, D. N.

citation count

  • 20

complete list of authors

  • Allen, Shannon Sedberry||Mackie, John T||Russell, Karen||Jeevan, Amminikutty||Skwor, Troy A||McMurray, David N

publication date

  • September 2008