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Emerging Themes for the Role of Antibodies in Tuberculosis

Immune Network 2019년 19권 4호 p.24 ~ 24
 ( Tran Andy C. ) - St George’s University of London

 ( Kim Mi-Young ) - St George’s University of London
 ( Reljic Rajko ) - St George’s University of London

Abstract


The best way to debunk a scientific dogma is to throw irrefutable evidence at it. This is especially true if the dogma in question has been nurtured over many decades, as is the case with the apparent redundancy of antibodies (Abs) against intracellular pathogens. Although not fully compelling yet, that ‘hard core’ evidence is nevertheless now slowly beginning to emerge. This is true for several clinically relevant infections but none more so than Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the archetype intracellular pathogen that poses a great health challenge to the mankind. Here, prompted by a spate of recent high-profile reports on the effects of Abs in various experimental models of tuberculosis, we step back and take a critical look at the progress that has been made in the last 5 years and highlight some of the strengths and shortcomings of the presented evidence. We conclude that the tide of the opinion has begun to turn in favour of Abs but we also caution against overinterpreting the currently available limited evidence. For, until definitive evidence that can withstand even the most rigorous of experimental tests is produced, the dogma may yet survive. Or indeed, we may find that the truth is hidden somewhere in between the dogma and the unfulfilled scientific prophecy.

키워드

Tuberculosis; Antibodies; Vaccines; Immunotherapy; Infection
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