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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Dialyzable leukocyte extracts (transfer factor) as adjuvant therapy for fungal keratitis

Concepcion Santacruz-Valdes, Gustavo Aguilar, Sergio Estrada-Parra, Mayra Perez-Tapia, Maria C Jimenez-Martinez

Am J Case Rep 2010; 11:

ID: 878562

Available online:

Published: 2010-05-10


Background: Fungal keratitis is a rare disorder that affects the cornea. Management is difficult and the prognosis is poor. Patients may develop severe complications that include loss of vision due to mycotic extension into the anterior chamber. Transfer Factors (TF) are dialyzable leukocyte extracts that have been widely used as adjuvant for treating patients with infectious diseases and/or with deficient cell-mediated response.
Case Report: We present here the visual and immunological findings of a 33-year-old man with fungal keratitis treated with conventional therapy plus dialyzable leukocyte extracts. After TF therapy, we observed diminished infiltration of the corneal stroma and epithelial healing, interestingly the systemic immunological changes characterized by increased frequency of IFN-g+ cells, were coincident with the clinical progress observed in the patient.
Conclusions: To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report of a case in which TF were used to improve treatment of a patient with an ocular fungal infection. TF therapy could act as a systemic immunological booster, inducing a Th1 response, characterized by an increase of IFN-g+ T cells that could influence the ocular microenvironment.

Keywords: dialyzable leukocyte extracts, immune response, fungal keratitis, Transfer Factor