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Exposure to silver nanoparticles primes mast cells for enhanced activation through the high-affinity IgE receptor.

Alsaleh NB, et al. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2019.


Mast cells are a key effector cell in type I allergic reactions. It has been shown that environmental exposures such as diesel exhaust and heavy metals exacerbate mast cell degranulation and activation. Today, the use of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) is rapidly expanding and silver nanoparticles (AgNP) are one of the mostly widely utilized ENMs, primarily for their antimicrobial properties, and are being incorporated into many consumer and biomedical products. We assessed whether pre-exposure of bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMCs) to 20 nm AgNPs enhanced degranulation and activation to an allergen (dinitrophenol-conjugated human serum albumin) by measuring β-hexosaminidase release, LTB4 and IL-6 production. In addition, we assessed reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, cell oxidative stress and toxicity as well as total and individual protein tyrosine phosphorylation (p-Tyr). We found that pre-exposure of BMMCs to AgNPs results in exacerbated allergen-mediated mast cell degranulation, LTB4 production and IL-6 release. Exposure of BMMCs to AgNPs exacerbated allergen-induced ROS generation, however, this was not associated with oxidative stress nor cell death. Finally, pre-exposure to AgNPs enhanced allergen-mediated global p-Tyr as well as individual proteins including Syk, PLCγ and LAT. Our findings indicate that pre-exposure to AgNPs exacerbates mast cell allergen-mediated phosphorylation of FcεR1-linked tyrosine kinases and ROS generation resulting in amplified early and late-phase responses. These findings suggest that exposure to AgNPs has the potential to prime mast cells to allergic immune responses, which could be of particular concern to atopic populations as the use of AgNPs in consumer and biomedical products rapidly increases.

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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