Carlos Guerra1, Devin Morris2, Andrea Sipin3, Steven Kung3, Mesharee Franklin2, Dennis Gray1,2, Michelle Tanzil1,2, Frederick Guilford4, Fadi T. Khasawneh5, Vishwanath Venketaraman1,2*
Glutathione (GSH), a tripeptide antioxidant, is essential for cellular homeostasis and plays a vital role in diverse cellular functions. Individuals who are infected with Human immuno deficiency virus (HIV) are known to be susceptible to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tb) infection. We report that by enhancing GSH levels, T-cells are able to inhibit the growth of M. tb inside macrophages. In addition, those GSH-replenished T cell cultures produced increased levels of Interleukin-2 (IL-2), Interleukin-12 (IL-12), and Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), cytokines, which are known to be crucial for the control of intracellular pathogens. Our study reveals that T lymphocytes that are derived from HIV infected individuals are deficient in GSH, and that this deficiency correlates with decreased levels of Th1 cytokines and enhanced growth of M. tb inside human macrophages.
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