Two sequential layers of antibody-mediated control of Legionella pneumophila infection

Journal article

Publication Details

Author(s): Weber SS, Stoycheva D, Nimmerjahn F, Oxenius A
Journal: European Journal of Immunology
Publication year: 2019
ISSN: 0014-2980


Protective immunity against intracellular pathogens, including bacteria, usually relies on cellular immunity. However, antibodies are also implicated in mediating protection against intracellular bacteria. In case of airway infection with Legionella pneumophila (Lpn), the causative agent of Legionnaires' disease, pre-existing Lpn-specific antibodies were shown to afford protection within two days of infection. Here we dissected the early kinetics of Ab-mediated protection against airway Lpn infection and observed two kinetically and mechanistically distinct phases of protection by passively administered antibodies. Within the first hour of infection, Lpn-opsonizing antibodies provided almost 10-fold protection in an antibody Fc-dependent, but FcR-independent manner. Later on, by two days post infection, Lpn-specific Ab-mediated protection strictly involved FcγR, Syk kinase activity in alveolar macrophages and induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The findings presented here contribute to the understanding of the mechanisms of Ab-mediated control of Lpn infection in actively or passively immunized individuals.

FAU Authors / FAU Editors

Nimmerjahn, Falk Prof. Dr.
Lehrstuhl für Genetik

External institutions with authors

Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich (ETHZ) / Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich

How to cite

Weber, S.S., Stoycheva, D., Nimmerjahn, F., & Oxenius, A. (2019). Two sequential layers of antibody-mediated control of Legionella pneumophila infection. European Journal of Immunology.

Weber, Stefan S., et al. "Two sequential layers of antibody-mediated control of Legionella pneumophila infection." European Journal of Immunology (2019).


Last updated on 2019-10-07 at 11:08