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Decreased heat-labile opsonic activity and complement levels associated with evidence of C3 breakdown products in infected pleural effusions

Farquet, J. J.
Published in The Journal of clinical investigation. 1979, vol. 63, no. 2, p. 326-334
Abstract Heat-labile opsonic activity was measured simultaneously in serum and pleural fluid of patients with transudates, infectious exudates (with positive or negative bacterial culture) and neoplastic exudates, using two different complement-dependent phagocytic tests: the killing of Staphylococcus aureus Wood 46 variant strain (K50 opsonic titers) and the assessment of ingestion rate of endotoxin-coated paraffin particles (Oil Red 0 uptake test). K50 opsonic titers were lower in culture-positive pleural effusions as compared to culture-negative (P < 0.002) or neoplastic effusions (P < 0.002). These results were corroborated by the Oil Red 0 uptake test. The data obtained with the two assays showed a significant correlation (P < 0.001). The hemolytic activity of complement (CH50) as well as the levels of C3 breakdown product, C3d, were measured in the same sera and pleural fluid samples and in an additional group of patients with pleural effusions of the same etiology. Effusions with positive cultures showed lower CH50 values (P < 0.01) and higher C3d values (P < 0.05) when compared to culture-negative pleural fluids. Finally, evidence for immune complexes in pleural effusions and sera was looked for by determination of Clq binding activity. Levels were higher in culture-positive effusions when compared to culture-negative fluids (P = 0.005).K50 opsonic titers showed a positive correlation with CH50 values (P < 0.001) for all fluids tested. Similarly Clq binding activity correlated with C3d levels in effusions of infectious origin (P = 0.05). Recovery experiments using the various bacterial species isolated from culture-positive pleural effusions showed evidence of complement inactivation upon incubation with pooled sera at concentrations of 10(7)-10(8) microorganisms/ml. These results indicate that one important reason for bacterial persistence in empyema may be decreased opsonization secondary to local consumption of complement.
Keywords AdultAgedBacterial Infections/immunologyBacterial Physiological PhenomenaComplement C1/metabolismComplement C3/ metabolismComplement Inactivator ProteinsComplement System Proteins/ metabolismFemaleHot TemperatureHumansMaleMiddle AgedOpsonin Proteins/ metabolismPleural Effusion/ immunology
PMID: 429556
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LEW, Daniel Pablo et al. Decreased heat-labile opsonic activity and complement levels associated with evidence of C3 breakdown products in infected pleural effusions. In: The Journal of clinical investigation, 1979, vol. 63, n° 2, p. 326-334. doi: 10.1172/JCI109306 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:7408

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Deposited on : 2010-06-21

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