Biofactors. 2004;21(1-4):119-21. Yamamoto Y, Matsunaga K, Friedman H. Department of Basic Laboratory Sciences, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, Suita 565-0871, Japan.
Bacterial pneumonia in immunocompromised patients as well as elderly persons often becomes a life threatening disease, even when effective antibiotics are used extensively. In addition, the appearance of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in medical facilities as well as in patients requires another approach to treat such patients besides treatment with antibiotics. In this regard, green tea catechins, such as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg), may be one of the potential agents for such purpose due to its possible potential immunomodulatory as well as antimicrobial activity. The studies by us showed that EGCg enhanced the in vitro resistance of alveolar macrophages to Legionella pneumophila infection by selective immunomodulatory effects on cytokine formation. Furthermore, the tobacco smoking-induced impairment of alveolar macrophages regarding antibacterial as well as immune activity was also recovered by EGCg treatment. These results indicate that EGCg may be a possible potential immunotherapeutic agent against respiratory infections in immunocompromised patients, such as heavy smokers. PMID: 15630181 [PubMed – in process]