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Juan Pablo Mackern-Oberti, Rubén Darío Motrich, Maria Teresa Damiani, Héctor Alex Saka, Cristian Andrés Quintero, Leonardo Rodolfo Sánchez, Tamara Moreno-Sosa, Carolina Olivera, Cecilia Cuffini, and Virginia Elena Rivero

Chlamydia trachomatis is the most commonly reported agent of sexually transmitted bacterial infections worldwide. This pathogen frequently leads to persistent, long-term, subclinical infections, which in turn may cause severe pathology in susceptible hosts. This is in part due to the strategies that Chlamydia trachomatis uses to survive within epithelial cells and to evade the host immune response, such as subverting intracellular trafficking, interfering signaling pathways and preventing apoptosis. Innate immune receptors such as toll-like receptors expressed on epithelial and immune cells in the genital tract mediate the recognition of chlamydial molecular patterns. After bacterial recognition, a subset of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines are continuously released by epithelial cells. The innate immune response is followed by the initiation of the adaptive response against Chlamydia trachomatis, which in turn may result in T helper 1-mediated protection or in T helper 2-mediated immunopathology. Understanding the molecular mechanisms developed by Chlamydia trachomatis to avoid killing and host immune response would be crucial for designing new therapeutic approaches and developing protective vaccines. In this review, we focus on chlamydial survival strategies and the elicited immune responses in male genital tract infections.

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María Belén Sánchez, Flavia Judith Neira, Tamara Moreno-Sosa, María Cecilia Michel Lara, Luciana Belén Viruel, María José Germanó, Elisa Olivia Pietrobon, Mariana Troncoso, Marta Soaje, Graciela Alma Jahn, Susana Ruth Valdez, and Juan Pablo Mackern-Oberti

In brief

The endocrine and immunological disruption induced by hyperthyroidism could alter gestation, placenta, and fetal development. This study suggests an immunological role of thyroid hormones in gestation.


Thyroid dysfunctions lead to metabolic, angiogenic, and developmental alterations at the maternal–fetal interface that cause reproductive complications. Thyroid hormones (THs) act through their nuclear receptors that interact with other steroid hormone receptors. Currently, immunological regulation by thyroid status has been characterized to a far less extent. It is well known that THs exert regulatory function on immune cells and modulate cytokine expression, but how hyperthyroidism (hyper) modulates placental immunological aspects leading to placental alterations is unknown. This work aims to throw light on how hyper modulates immunological and morphological placental aspects. Control and hyper (induced by a daily s.c. injection of T4 0.25 mg/kg) Wistar rats were mated 8 days after starting T4 treatment and euthanized on days 19 (G19) and 20 (G20) of pregnancy. We removed the placenta to perform qPCR, flow cytometry, immunohistochemistry, Western blot and histological analysis, and amniotic fluid and serum to evaluate hormone levels. We observed that hyper increases the fetal number, fetal weight, and placental weight on G19. Moreover, hyper induced an endocrine imbalance with higher serum corticosterone and changed placental morphology, specifically the basal zone and decidua. These changes were accompanied by an increased mRNA expression of glucocorticoid receptor and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, an increased mRNA and protein expression of prolactin receptor, and an increase in CD45+ infiltration. Finally, by in vitro assays, we evidenced that TH induced immune cell activation. In summary, we demonstrated that hyper modulates immunological and morphological placental aspects and induces fetal phenotypic changes, which could be related to preterm labor observed in hyper.