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J Immunol. 2000 Nov 15;165(10):5839-46.

Murine eotaxin-2: a constitutive eosinophil chemokine induced by allergen challenge and IL-4 overexpression.

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  • 1Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Allergy, and Clinical Immunology, Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital Medical Center, University of Cincinnati, OH 45229, USA.


The generation of tissue eosinophilia is governed in part by chemokines; initial investigation has identified three chemokines in the human genome with eosinophil selectivity, referred to as eotaxin-1, -2, and -3. Elucidation of the role of these chemokines is dependent in part upon analysis of murine homologues; however, only one murine homologue, eotaxin-1, has been identified. We now report the characterization of the murine eotaxin-2 cDNA, gene and protein. The eotaxin-2 cDNA contains an open reading frame that encodes for a 119-amino acid protein. The mature protein, which is predicted to contain 93 amino acids, is most homologous to human eotaxin-2 (59.1% identity), but is only 38.9% identical with murine eotaxin-1. Northern blot analysis reveals three predominant mRNA species and highest constitutive expression in the jejunum and spleen. Additionally, allergen challenge in the lung with Aspergillus fumigatus or OVA revealed marked induction of eotaxin-2 mRNA. Furthermore, eotaxin-2 mRNA was strongly induced by both transgenic over-expression of IL-4 in the lung and administration of intranasal IL-4. Analysis of eotaxin-2 mRNA expression in mice transgenic for IL-4 but genetically deficient in STAT-6 revealed that the IL-4-induced expression was STAT-6 dependent. Recombinant eotaxin-2 protein induced dose-dependent chemotactic responses on murine eosinophils at concentrations between 1-1000 ng/ml, whereas no activity was displayed on murine macrophages or neutrophils. Functional analysis of recombinant protein variants revealed a critical role for the amino terminus. Thus, murine eotaxin-2 is a constitutively expressed eosinophil chemokine likely to be involved in homeostatic, allergen-induced, and IL-4-associated immune responses.

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