Folia Parasitologica 60 1-6 (2013) | DOI: 10.14411/fp.2013.001
There are many strategies to control leishmaniasis, but majority of them are inadequate. Killed Leishmania vaccine (KLV) has been applied for its immunogenicity in human and mouse model. Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) as adjuvant is an immunemodulator inducing humoral and cellular immune responses during zoonotic cutaneous leishmaniasis (ZCL). Both KLV and BCG have been applied for their immune responses in hosts for controlling leishmaniasis. In this study, KLV and BCG were applied to inhibit replication and visceralization of Leishmania major in BALB/c mice. Mice were injected with KLV and BCG, followed by infection with promastigotes of L. major. Six weeks after infection, a small nodule appeared, which was followed by development of a large lesion and visceralization. Effects of KLV and BCG, physiopathological changes, lesion size, delay of lesion formation, proliferation of amastigotes inside macrophages and detection of amastigotes in target organs were studied. Results showed that the KLV had anti-leishmanial activity by reducing lesion size on late infection. In KLV and BCG group, the average number of amastigotes in macrophages was lower than in other groups. Significant reductions in number of amastigotes in both spleen and lymph node were observed, indicating lower visceralization of Leishmania parasites in these target organs. No significant changes were presented in body weights, survival rates and degrees of splenomegaly in test group. It can be concluded that application of KLV and BCG had acceptable efficacy in reduction of skin lesions size and proliferation of parasites, even though a few side-effects were observed. It is indicated that KLV/BSG may have ability to modulate host immune responses against Leishmania parasites and to reduce pathophysiology of the disease during infection.
Received: May 11, 2012; Accepted: September 14, 2012; Published: February 14, 2013