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Wien Klin Wochenschr. 1993;105(23):677-81.

[Effector cells in allergy: biological principles and new pharmacologic concepts].

[Article in German]

Author information

  • 1Abteilung für Hämatologie und Hämostaseologie, Universitätsklinik für Innere Medizin I, AKH, Wien.


The clinical symptoms of allergy are caused by cellular (IgE-triggered) responses to an allergen. Effector cells of allergy include eosinophil and basophil granulocytes, as well as tissue mast cells. Growth and accumulation, as well as IgE-dependent and independent functions of these cells are regulated by distinct proteohormones and peptides. The hemopoietic cytokines IL-3 (interleukin-3), IL-5 and GM-CSF (granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor) are involved in the regulation of basophils (and eosinophils), whereas the ligand for c-kit, SCF (stem cell factor) is a mast cell-specific agonist. Basophils and mast cells express high-affinity IgE-binding sites. Allergen binding to IgE on mast cells and basophils, and consecutive cross-linking of IgE receptors is followed by production and/or secretion of inflammatory mediator substances. Specific activation and deactivation of mast cells/basophils in vitro has been demonstrated by use of recombinant cytokines and allergens, and specific haptens or by use of novel drugs, and should lead to epitope-specific diagnosis and better management of allergic diseases in the future.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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