• Simeen Ber Rahman
  • Arfan ul Bari


Background: Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) has become a major public health problem inPakistan and research is now focused to characterize the host’s immune response, its clinicalcorrelation and subsequent implications in management in this disease. This study was done toevaluate cellular immune host response in patients with active and healed CL and its possibleimplications in prevention of disease in susceptibles. Methods: This cross sectional andcomparative study was conducted in Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) and MilitaryHospital (MH) Rawalpindi (1998-2000). 30 biopsies of active skin lesions and 15 biopsies fromhealed lesions, after processing, were studied for various immunophenotype cells by usingmonoclonal antibodies. Total and differential T cell counts were recorded in these skin tissues.Non parametric Kruskal-Wallis Test for one way ANOVA was used to compare the median cellcounts between active, healed and normal skin and p-value <0.05 was considered significant.Results: The total cell counts, CD3+ cells and CD57+ (NK) cells were found statistically different(p=<0.001) when active forms of the disease were compared with healed lesions and normal skintissue. The difference was not significant (p=>0.05) on comparing healed lesions with normal skintissue biopsies except in case of CD3+ cell counts (p=<0.05). However, CD4+, CD8+ andCD19+(Plasma cells) counts were never seen significant (p=>0.05) on comparison. Conclusion:NK cells and gamma delta cells seem to be responsible for limitation of the disease andelimination of the parasite from the lesion in cases of acute cutaneous leishmaniasis.Keywords: Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous leishmaniasis, Cellular immune host response


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