Abstract

The epidemiological coexistence of schistosomiasis and malaria is frequently observed in developing countries. Co-infection with malaria in children could influence the development of acquired immunity associated with the resistance or the pathology of schistosomiasis. In the present study, performed during May to June 1996 in Senegal, the humoral immune response to Schistosoma haematobium 28 kDa glutathione S-transferase (Sh28GST) vaccinal antigen and to soluble egg antigens (SEA) has been evaluated in individuals infected by S. haematobium. Specific immunoglobulin G3 (IgG3) and IgE responses were significantly higher in co-infected children with Plasmodium falciparum compared with children infected with S. haematobium only. In addition, circulating levels of interferon-γ (IFN-γ), interleukin-10 (IL-10), and soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor II (sTNF-RII), 3 parameters associated with schistosomiasis morbidity, were significantly increased in co-infected children. Taken together, this study indicated that malaria co-infection can both influence the acquired specific immune response to schistosome antigens and unbalance the regulation of inflammatory factors closely involved in schistosomiasis pathology.

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