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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 Sep 30;100(20):11589-93. Epub 2003 Sep 17.

Expression of the type 2 receptor for cysteinyl leukotrienes (CysLT2R) by human mast cells: Functional distinction from CysLT1R.

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Division of Rheumatology, Immunology, and Allergy, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Departments of Medicine and Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Cysteinyl leukotrienes (cysLTs) mediate vascular leakage and bronchoconstriction through the smooth muscle-associated CysLT type 1 receptor (CysLT1R), one of at least two loosely homologous cysLT-binding G protein-coupled receptors. We previously reported that CysLT1R is expressed by cultured human mast cells (hMCs), and that priming these cells with IL-4 enhances their sensitivity to calcium flux and cytokine generation in response to cys-LTs and the nucleotide ligand, uridine diphosphate (UDP), without increasing their surface expression of CysLT1R. We now report that hMCs express the type 2 receptor for cysLTs (CysLT2R) as well, and that the amount of surface CysLT2R protein increases in response to priming with IL-4. The selective function of CysLT2R was evident based on uninhibited IL-8 secretion by IL-4-primed hMCs stimulated with cys-LTs or UDP in the presence of the selective CysLT1R antagonist MK571. MK571 did inhibit IL-5 generation, calcium flux, and phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase. IL-8 secretion was inhibited by pertussis toxin and a selective p38 kinase inhibitor, SB203580. The CysLT2 response may permit the cys-LTs and nucleotides generated in infection and tissue injury to elicit IL-8 generation by hMCs, potentially leading to neutrophilic infiltration, a characteristic of aerosol challenge-induced late-phase responses and of sudden death associated with asthma.

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