Functional polymorphisms of macrophage migration inhibitory factor as predictors of morbidity and mortality of pneumococcal meningitis

Athina Savva, Matthijs C. Brouwer, Thierry Roger, Mercedes Valls Serón, Didier le Roy, Bart Ferwerda, Arie van der Ende, Pierre-Yves Bochud, Diederik van de Beek, Thierry Calandra

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Abstract

Pneumococcal meningitis is the most frequent and critical type of bacterial meningitis. Because cytokines play an important role in the pathogenesis of bacterial meningitis, we examined whether functional polymorphisms of the proinflammatory cytokine macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) were associated with morbidity and mortality of pneumococcal meningitis. Two functional MIF promoter polymorphisms, a microsatellite (-794 CATT5-8; rs5844572) and a single-nucleotide polymorphism (-173 G/C; rs755622) were genotyped in a prospective, nationwide cohort of 405 patients with pneumococcal meningitis and in 329 controls matched for age, gender, and ethnicity. Carriages of the CATT7 and -173 C high-expression MIF alleles were associated with unfavorable outcome (P= 0.005 and 0.003) and death (P= 0.03 and 0.01). In a multivariate logistic regression model, shock [odds ratio (OR) 26.0, P= 0.02] and carriage of the CATT7 allele (OR 5.12,P= 0.04) were the main predictors of mortality. MIF levels in the cerebrospinal fluid were associated with systemic complications and death (P= 0.0002). Streptococcus pneumoniae strongly up-regulated MIF production in whole blood and transcription activity of high-expression MIF promoter Luciferase reporter constructs in THP-1 monocytes. Consistent with these findings, treatment with anti-MIF immunoglogulin G (IgG) antibodies reduced bacterial loads and improved survival in a mouse model of pneumococcal pneumonia and sepsis. The present study provides strong evidence that carriage of high-expression MIF alleles is a genetic marker of morbidity and mortality of pneumococcal meningitis and also suggests a potential role for MIF as a target of immune-modulating adjunctive therapy
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3597-3602
JournalPROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Volume113
Issue number13
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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