Tachyzoites of the obligate intracellular protozoan Toxoplasma gondii are resistant to lysis in non-immune human serum. We have examined the mechanism of this serum resistance in RH and P strain organisms, which differ markedly in virulence, but are equally resistant to serum killing. Rapid, but limited, activation of the alternative complement pathway occurred in non-immune human serum, with deposition of equivalent amounts of C3 on the two strains. C component C3 bound covalently to parasite acceptor molecules via an ester linkage. The predominant form of C3 was iC3b which cannot participate in formation of a lytic C5b-9 complex. Multiple membrane constituents of the tachyzoite of T. gondii may serve as acceptors for the limited amount of C3 deposited during incubation in non-immune serum. When tachyzoites were presensitized with the lytic anti-p30 mAb 7B8, new amide-limited C3-acceptor complexes formed. Nearly equivalent C3 binding but a threefold enhancement of 125I-C9 binding occurred when mAb 7B8 pre-sensitized tachyzoites were compared to native organisms. These results indicate that tachyzoites of T. gondii are serum resistant because of failure to activate C efficiently. Presensitization with a lytic mAb alters the site of complement deposition and augments C5b-9 formation.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - 1989|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy