© Society for Leukocyte Biology. An ascitic microenvironment can condition the immune response of cells from cirrhotic patients with spontaneous bacterial peritonitis. To characterize this response, we determined the cytokine concentrations in ascitic fluid and analyzed the phenotype and function of ascitic leukocytes at diagnosis and after antibiotic-induced resolution in sterile ascites and ascitic fluid of 2 spontaneous bacterial peritonitis variants: positive and negative bacteriological culture. At diagnosis, a high concentration was found of IL-6 and IL-10 in the ascitic fluid from negative and positive bacteriological culture. The IL-6 concentration correlated with the percentage of neutrophils (R = 0.686, P < 0.001). In this context, positive and negative culture neutrophils had an impaired oxidative burst, and, after the antibiotic, the negative culture spontaneous bacterial peritonitis burst was fully recovered. Higher concentrations of IL-6 and IL-10 correlated with the presence of low granular CD 14low macrophages (R = −0.436, P = 0.005 and R = 0.414, P = 0.007, respectively). Positive culture spontaneous bacterial peritonitis macrophages expressed the lowest levels of CD16, CD86, CD11b and CD206, and HLA-DR, suggesting an impaired global function. Treatment increased all markers on the positive culture macrophages and CD11b and CD86 on negative culture macrophages. In negative culture spontaneous bacterial peritonitis, this increase was accompanied by phagocytic function recovery. The antibiotics then reverted the marker levels on positive and negative culture macrophages to the levels on sterile ascitis macrophages and restored ascitic negative culture cell function.
- Oxidative burst