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FASEB J. 2001 Apr;15(6):940-9.

Human neutrophils express the high-affinity receptor for immunoglobulin E (Fc epsilon RI): role in asthma.

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Meakins Christie Laboratories, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


Polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs) are important effector cells in host defense and the inflammatory response to antigen. The involvement of PMNs in inflammation is mediated mainly by the Fc receptor family, including IgE receptors. Recently, PMNs were shown to express two IgE receptors (CD23/Fc epsilon RII and galectin-3). In allergic diseases, the dominant role of IgE has been mainly ascribed to its high-affinity receptor, Fc epsilon RI. We have examined the expression of Fc epsilon RI by PMNS: mRNA and cell surface expression of Fc epsilon RI alpha chain was identified on PMNs from asthmatic subjects. Furthermore, preincubation with human IgE Fc fragment blocks completely the binding of anti-Fc epsilon RI alpha chain (mAb15--1) to human PMNS: Conversely, preincubation of PMNs with mAb15--1 inhibits significantly the binding of IgE Fc fragment to PMNs, indicating that IgE bound to the cell surface of PMNs mainly via the Fc epsilon RI. Peripheral blood and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) PMNs from asthmatic subjects also express intracellular Fc epsilon RI alpha and beta chain immunoreactivity. Engagement of Fc epsilon RI induces the release of IL-8 by PMNS: Collectively, these observations provide new evidence that PMNs express the Fc epsilon RI and suggest that these cells may play a role in allergic inflammation through an IgE-dependent activation mechanism.

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