J Bacteriol Virol.  2020 Dec;50(4):203-217. 10.4167/jbv.2020.50.4.203.

The Roles of Chemokines in Immune Response to Mycobacterial Infection

  • 1Department of Microbiology, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon 35015, Republic of Korea
  • 2Infection Control Convergence Research Center, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon 35015, Republic of Korea


Tuberculosis (TB), a global and deadly infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), is manifested with host immune reaction. The balanced regulation between protective immune and pathologic inflammatory responses is critical to control progression to TB. Chemokines are a large family of cytokines that play an essential role for chemotaxis of immune and inflammatory cells to the sites of infection. Numerous chemokines including CXCL10 were reported as potential biomarkers of various stages of TB infection. In addition, several chemokines and their receptors play as key players to coordinate host immune defense as innate effectors and mediators of adaptive immune responses. Accumulating evidence suggests that some chemokines, if uncontrolled, are associated with host pathological inflammation during infection. In this review, we will discuss recent advances in understanding which chemokines have potentials as diagnostic markers. In addition, we focus the roles and mechanisms by which chemokines and their receptors are involved in both host immune protection and pathology during TB infection. The controlled activation of chemokine system will determine the coordinated biological outcomes of innate immune responses during pathogenic infection.


Tuberculosis; Chemokine; Biomarker; Immune response; Inflammation


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