Immunological control of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection in an immunodeficient murine model of thermal injuries

T. Katakura, T. Yoshida, M. Kobayashi, D. N. Herndon, Fujio Suzuki

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33 Scopus citations


Staphylococcus aureus, especially methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA), is a major cause of sepsis in patients who are immunosuppressed by their burns. In this study, an immunological regulation of MRSA infection was attempted in a mouse model of thermal injury. SCIDbg mice were resistant to MRSA infection, while SCIDbgMN mice (SCIDbg mice depleted of neutrophils and macrophages (MΦ)) were susceptible to the same infection. Also, thermally injured SCIDbg mice were shown to be susceptible to MRSA infection. On the other hand, the resistance of SCIDbgMN mice to the infection was completely recovered after an inoculation with MΦ from normal mice. However, anti-MRSA resistance was not shown in SCIDbgMN mice inoculated with MΦ from thermally injured mice. MΦfrom MRSA-infected thermally injured mice were identified as alternatively activated MΦ and MΦfrom MRSA-infected unburned mice were characterized as classically activated MΦ. MΦ from thermally injured SCIDbg mice previously treated with 2-carboxyethylgermanium sesquioxide (Ge-132) protected SCIDbgMN mice against MRSA infection. Ge-132 has been described as an inhibitor of alternatively activated MΦ, generation. These results suggest that MRSA infection in thermally injured patients is controlled immunologically through the induction of anti-MRSA effector cells and elimination of burn-associated alternatively activated MΦ, which are cells that inhibit the generation of classically activated MΦ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)419-425
Number of pages7
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005



  • MRSA
  • Macrophages
  • Thermal injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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