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J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2000 Nov;106(5 Suppl):S242-6.

Systemic aspects of allergic disease: bone marrow responses.

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Asthma Research Group, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


In patients with allergic diseases, allergen provocation can activate a systemic response that provokes inflammatory cell production by the bone marrow. After release and differentiation of progenitor cells, eosinophils, basophils, and mast cells are typically recruited to tissues in atopic individuals. An understanding at the molecular level of the signaling process that leads to these systemic responses between the target organ, especially the airways, and the bone marrow may open up new avenues of therapy for allergic inflammatory disease. Studies that support the critical involvement of the bone marrow in the development of eosinophilic inflammation of the airways point out the systemic nature of these conditions and their potential for biologic intervention. Hemopoietic events that originate in the bone marrow are potential targets of long-term therapy for rhinitis and asthma. For example, the "beneficial" systemic activity of cortico-steroids through modulation of hemopoietic mechanisms and inflammatory cell recruitment to the airways is essential for the optimal treatment of both upper and lower airway inflammation.

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