Biological activity of interleukin-2 bound to Candida albicans

C. B. Treseler, R. T. Maziarz, S. M. Levitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The lymphokine interleukin-2 (IL-2), which is necessary for the generation of an optimal cell-mediated immune response, has recently been shown to have lectinlike properties, with specificity for high-mannose groups. Therefore, the ability of IL-2 to bind to the mannose-rich fungus Candida albicans was examined. Heat-killed fungi preincubated with IL-2 stimulated, in a dose- dependent manner, proliferation of the IL-2-dependent cell line CTLL20. Soluble mannan, which is rich in exposed mannose groups, inhibited binding of IL-2 to C. albicans by approximately 60%, suggesting that the lectinlike properties of IL-2 are partially responsible for its fungal binding capacity. Binding of IL-2 to fungi appeared to be reversible, as C. albicans preincubated with IL-2 stimulated CTLL20 proliferation even when the fungi and cells were separated by an 0.4-μm-pore-size membrane. The lymphoproliferative response of normal human peripheral blood mononuclear cells to C. albicans was augmented when the fungus was preincubated with IL- 2. Binding of 125I-IL-2 could not be inhibited by unlabeled IL-2, suggesting the absence of high-affinity receptors on C. albicans for IL-2. While the in vivo relevance remains to be determined, these data demonstrate that IL-2 can bind to C. albicans in vitro and thereby influence the host response to this medically important fungus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-188
Number of pages6
JournalInfection and Immunity
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases


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