An in vitro model of cellular immunity in the guinea pig was established. Animals were immunized with tubercle bacilli, bovine gamma globulin, or picrylated human serum albumin in complete Freund's adjuvant. Oil-induced peritoneal exudates from immune and control animals were cultured overnight with and without specific antigen. The cultures were washed and the macrophage monolayers were infected with Listeria monocytogenes. At intervals the monolayers were lysed and the numbers of viable intracellular bacteria were quantitated by pour plate cultures. Random monolayers were also evaluated in sequence by visually counting the intracellular bacteria on Gram-stained plates. Both methods demonstrated that the macrophages from immune animals had markedly enhanced listericidal activity when the peritoneal exudates were cultured with antigen before infection. Macrophage migration inhibition was also demonstrated under these conditions.

The experiments reported here describe an in vitro model of cellular immunity which will allow separation and recombination of cell types and direct assay of cell products in efforts to elucidate further the mechanisms of the immunologically mediated enhancement of macrophage bactericidal capacity.

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