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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2006;141(4):346-53. Epub 2006 Aug 29.

Basophil interleukin 4 and interleukin 13 production is suppressed during the early phase of rush immunotherapy.

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  • 1Asthma and Allergy Research Group, Department of Respiratory Medicine and Allergology, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Goteborg, Sweden.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Studies using rush immunotherapy (RIT) have shown that rapid protection can be achieved using protocols allowing a fast increment of allergen dose. We examined the early effects of RIT on basophil numbers and expression of CD203c, production of interleukin (IL)-4 and IL-13 and histamine release by basophils in the peripheral blood of patients treated with immunotherapy and controls.

METHODS:

Twelve patients treated with RIT and 4 untreated controls were included in the study. Any adverse events were evaluated during the incremental phase of RIT. Mononuclear cells were isolated before the start of RIT and 3 days, 1 week, 4 weeks and 3 months after the beginning of the treatment. Histamine release upon allergen stimulation, expression of CD203c and allergen-induced production of IL-4 and IL-13 by basophils were examined.

RESULTS:

Significant decreases in blood basophil count (p = 0.02) were observed early in the treatment, returning to baseline values 1 week after the start of RIT. Similarly, histamine release decreased at day 3 (p = 0.02), but returned to pretreatment levels after 1 week. Also, the percentage of IL-4+ and IL-13+ basophils and levels of CD203c expression were markedly reduced early in the treatment. IL-4 and IL-13 production correlated with histamine release and CD203c expression. Histamine release and production of IL-4 and IL-13 by basophils before the treatment correlated with the severity of adverse events during the incremental phase of RIT.

CONCLUSION:

We report the decrease in blood basophil numbers, their lower activation status and the reduced production of IL-4 and IL-13 early in the course of RIT. This early suppression of basophil activation could be one mechanism behind the protective effect of RIT.

PMID:
16940746
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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