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The course of allergen-induced leukocyte infiltration in human and experimental asthma

: Lommatzsch, M.; Julius, P.; Kuepper, M.; Garn, H.; Bratke, K.; Irmscher, S.; Luttmann, W.; Renz, H.; Braun, A.; Virchow, J.C.


The journal of allergy and clinical immunology : JACI 118 (2006), No.1, pp.91-97
ISSN: 0091-6749
ISSN: 1097-6825
ISSN: 1085-8725
Journal Article
Fraunhofer ITEM ()
allergen challenge; allergic airway inflammation; Asthma; Kinetics; Leukocytes; Eosinophils; Bronchoalveolar lavage

BACKGROUND: Although the timing of allergen-induced bronchoconstriction is well defined, there is little information about the kinetics of allergen-induced leukocyte infiltration in asthma and its comparability between human and animal models of asthma. OBJECTIVE: To investigate systematically allergen-induced leukocyte infiltration into the airway lumen in human and experimental asthma by using bronchoalveolar lavage. METHODS: Patients with allergic asthma were lavaged at different time points as long as 1 week after segmental allergen challenge. Allergen-sensitized mice were lavaged as long as 3 weeks after allergen challenge. Differential cell counts, lymphocyte subsets, and cytokines were assessed in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. RESULTS: In both models, neutrophil infiltration was a relatively early event (maximum: 18 hours after challenge). In contrast, eosinophil infiltration peaked 42 hours (human model) to 4 days (mouse model) after allergen challenge, paralleled by an IL-5 peak in this period. There were elevated macrophage counts over a period of several days after allergen challenge in both models. Lymphocytes (predominantly CD4+ T cells) peaked 18 hours after challenge in the human model, but not until 2 weeks after challenge in the murine model. CONCLUSION: Early neutrophil accumulation (within hours after challenge) and delayed eosinophil accumulation (within days after challenge) in the airway lumen are common features of allergen-induced airway inflammation, whereas lymphocyte kinetics are dependent on the asthma model. CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Similarities in the infiltration kinetics of granulocytes after allergen challenge suggest a common role for these cells in asthma, whereas the presumed orchestration of allergic inflammation by lymphocytes appears to differ between the models.