Summary: INFECTION AND IMMUNITY, Feb. 2003, p. 964972 Vol. 71, No. 2
0019-9567/03/$08.00 0 DOI: 10.1128/IAI.71.2.964972.2003
Copyright © 2003, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
Apoptotic Killing and Phagocytosis of Host Cells by the Parasite
Christopher D. Huston,1
* Douglas R. Boettner,2
and William A. Petri, Jr.1,2,3
Departments of Medicine,1
University of Virginia Health System,
Charlottesville, Virginia 22908
Received 30 August 2002/Returned for modification 11 October 2002/Accepted 25 October 2002
The ability of Entamoeba histolytica to kill and phagocytose host cells correlates with parasite virulence. This
study addressed the role of apoptotic cell killing and host cell phosphatidylserine exposure in the subsequent
phagocytosis of Jurkat T cells by E. histolytica. Ingested host cells were apoptotic, as evidenced by the activation
of caspase 3 in 88% 3% (mean and standard deviation [SD] of the mean) of Jurkat cells engulfed by E.
histolytica; ingested cells without detectable active caspase 3 were already disrupted and partially digested. That