Differential binding of acapsulate and encapsulated strains of Cryptococcus neoformans to human neutrophils.

M D Richardson, L J White, I C McKay, G S Shankland

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    Investigations into mechanisms of binding of encapsulated and acapsulate strains of Cryptococcus neoformans by human neutrophils were performed, using a monolayer assay. The two strains bound to neutrophils by different mechanisms although both had an absolute requirement for opsonization with complement components in normal human serum for binding to occur. Neutrophil binding of encapsulated yeasts required conformational changes in actin yet did not appear to lead to phagocytosis of the organism. A maximum of 12 acapsulate cells bound per neutrophil compared with only four encapsulated yeasts. Cytochalasin D treatment reduced the maximum numbers able to bind per neutrophil by 50%. The encapsulated cryptococci appeared to compete with each other for binding to neutrophils whereas the acapsulate yeast cells bound to neutrophils in an approximately Poisson distribution, suggesting independent binding. Binding of acapsulate cryptococci did not require actin filaments and appeared to trigger phagocytosis. Thus, the capsule of C. neoformans appeared to inhibit binding and internalization by neutrophils.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of medical and veterinary mycology : bi-monthly publication of the International Society for Human and Animal Mycology
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 1993


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