Revista argentina de cardiología
versión On-line ISSN 1850-3748
BERTOCCHI, Graciela L. et al. Immunological Assessment of Benznidazol Therapy in Chronic Chagas Disease. Rev. argent. cardiol. [online]. 2008, vol.76, n.4, pp. 260-265. ISSN 1850-3748.
To determine the effect of benznidazol therapy on memory T cells specific for Trypanosoma cruzi, 47 patients between 30 and 50 years old and three positive serological tests for T. cruzi without cardiopathy were selected. Benznidazol was administered in a dose of 5 mg/kg/d during 30 days. Serological, immunological and clinical assessment was performed at basal (time 0) and at 2, 6 and 12 months following treatment, and once a year thereafter. IFN-ã ELISPOT assay was used to evaluate T cell responses against a T. cruzi lysate obtained from amastigotes. The frequency of IFN-ã - producing memory T lymphocytes specific for T. cruzi was significantly lower in the treatment group (n=33) compared to the control group (n=14) 12 months after the therapy. IFN- ã response became negative in 11 patients in the treatment group (44%). Among these 11 patients, conventional serology also became negative in 4 patients (36%) after 2 years of treatment. No clinical manifestations occurred during follow-up. These findings show that benznidazol is capable of modulating T cell responses specific for T. cruzi. Measuring the frequency of memory T lymphocytes producing IFN-ã might become a more sensitive test to determine earlier the impact and/or efficacy of the specific treatment against this parasite.
Palabras clave : Chagas disease; Benznidazol; Lymphocytes; Trypanosoma cruzi.