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Secretion of a chemotactic factor for neutrophils and eosinophils by alveolar macrophages from asthmatic patients

Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0091-6749(84)90186-6


Abstract The studies presented in this article demonstrate the release of an IgE-dependent chemotactic factor for polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN) and eosinophils by alveolar macrophages (AMs) from normal subjects (n = 15) and allergic asthmatic patients (n = 15). A 60-minute incubation of normal AMs previously sensitized by 20% nonheated allergic sera with anti-human IgE antibody or the related allergen induced the release of a chemotactic activity (CA) for PMN and eosinophils in culture supernatants. When AMs were obtained from asthmatic patients, direct incubation with anti-IgE or the related allergen induced the same CA, whereas incubation with an unrelated allergen failed to produce CA (neutrophil CA after addition of anti-IgE, 22.5 ± 3.5 cells per high power field; with related allergen, 15.8 ± 3.6; with unrelated allergen, 0.7 ± 1.8; p < 0.0001). A partial characterization of the neutrophil chemotactic factor was carried out. Enzymatic treatment by trypsin or carboxypeptidase or by heating (56 °C for 3 hr) failed to abolish the neutrophil CA. After gel filtration the greater part of the neutrophil CA (80%) was recovered among low-molecular-weight components (300 to 1300 dallons). A preliminary deactivation of PMN by leukotriene B 4 suppressed the CA of AM supernatants. These results indicate that IgE-dependent stimulation of AMs produces a neutrophil and eosinophil CA, present in a low-molecular-weight fraction possibly related to leukotrienes, and emphasizes the role of AMs in inflammatory lung processes during allergic asthma.

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