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Int J Immunopharmacol. 2000 Jun;22(6):411-8.

Inhibitory effect of anaphylactic shock by caffeine in rats.

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College of Pharmacy, Center of Oriental Medicinal Science, Wonkwang University, Iksan, Chonbuk 570-749, South Korea.


Caffeine is known to reduce evoked histamine secretion, but the effects of caffeine on anaphylactic shock have not been clarified. We have investigated the effects of caffeine on anaphylactic shock in rats. Systemic anaphylactic shock by compound 48/80 injection was monitored for 1 h. An IgE-dependent local anaphylactic shock was generated by sensitizing the skin with anti-dinitrophenyl (DNP) IgE followed 48 h later with an injection of antigen. Caffeine inhibited compound 48/80-induced anaphylatic shock to 40% with a dose of 1 mg/kg. Caffeine (0.1 mg/kg) inhibited to 56.4+/-0.4% passive cutaneous anaphylactic shock activated by anti-DNP IgE. Caffeine (5-20 mM) significantly inhibited histamine release from rat peritoneal mast cells (RPMCs) activated by compound 48/80 or anti-DNP IgE. Especially, caffeine (20 mM) inhibited by 96.7+/-0.5% histamine release activated by compound 48/80. Moreover, caffeine (1-20 mM) had a significant inhibitory effect on anti-DNP IgE-induced tumor necrosis factor-alpha production from RPMCs. The level of cAMP in RPMCs, when caffeine (20 mM) was added, increased significantly after 5-60 min compared with that of a normal control. These results indicate that caffeine inhibits immediate-type allergic reactions by inhibition of mast cell degranulation in vivo and in vitro.

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