Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Burkholderia cenocepacia are opportunistic pathogens causing important chronic pulmonary infections in patients affected by cystic fibrosis (CF). The interplay of bacterial and host factors involved in the establishment and evolution of these infections needs further clarification. We investigated the susceptibility of P. aeruginosa and B. cenocepacia derived from CF patients or from the environment to hyperimmune sera obtained from the same CF patients and evaluated the amount of specific antibodies present in these sera. Our data indicate that the bactericidal activity of human serum against these two bacteria is mostly complement-mediated, and that the mucous layer probably confers serum-resistance to B. cenocepacia. The mean amount of antibodies against P. aeruginosa was higher than that against B. cenocepacia. The contribution of these data to the assessment of the importance of the humoral immune response in CF pulmonary infections by Pseudomonas and Burkholderia is briefly discussed.
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