UNIT 14.25 Measurement of Macrophage-Mediated Killing of Intracellular Bacteria, Including Francisella and Mycobacteria

  1. Karen L. Elkins1,
  2. Siobhán C. Cowley1,
  3. J. Wayne Conlan2

Published Online: 1 APR 2011

DOI: 10.1002/0471142735.im1425s93

Current Protocols in Immunology

Current Protocols in Immunology

How to Cite

Elkins, K. L., Cowley, S. C. and Conlan, J. W. 2011. Measurement of Macrophage-Mediated Killing of Intracellular Bacteria, Including Francisella and Mycobacteria. Current Protocols in Immunology. 93:14.25:14.25.1–14.25.13.

Author Information

  1. 1

    Laboratory of Mycobacterial Diseases and Cellular Immunology, Division of Bacterial, Parasitic, and Allergenic Products, CBER/U.S. FDA, Rockville, Maryland

  2. 2

    National Research Council of Canada, Institute for Biological Sciences, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 APR 2011
  2. Published Print: APR 2011


Macrophages activated by T cell cytokines are a critical defense mechanism against intracellular bacterial pathogens. This unit presents two general methods for assessing the capacity of mouse macrophages, activated with either soluble cytokines or whole immune T lymphocytes, to control or reduce numbers of intracellular bacteria residing within them. “Measurement of killing” is inferred from a reduction in the number of colony-forming units (cfu) of bacteria at the end of a culture period, compared to the input numbers of cfu at initiation of culture, to the peak numbers of cfu measured during culture, or to a control group in which killing is expected to be poor. Curr. Protoc. Immunol. 93:14.25.1-14.25.13. © 2011 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


  • Francisella;
  • Mycobacteria;
  • intracellular bacteria;
  • macrophage;
  • cytokine;
  • intracellular killing;
  • T lymphocytes