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Allergy. 2014 May;69(5):674-7. doi: 10.1111/all.12375. Epub 2014 Feb 24.

Omalizumab therapy is associated with reduced circulating basophil populations in asthmatic children.

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Department of Pediatrics, Division of Allergy and Immunology, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA; Institute for Immunology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.


Basophils have been implicated in promoting the early development of TH 2 cell responses in some murine models of TH 2 cytokine-associated inflammation. However, the specific role of basophils in allergic asthma remains an active area of research. Recent studies in animal models and human subjects suggest that IgE may regulate the homeostasis of human basophil populations. Here, we examine basophil populations in children with severe asthma before and during therapy with the IgE-directed monoclonal antibody omalizumab. Omalizumab therapy was associated with a significant reduction in circulating basophil numbers, a finding that was concurrent with improved clinical outcomes. The observation that circulating basophils are reduced following omalizumab therapy supports a mechanistic link between IgE levels and circulating basophil populations, and may provide new insights into one mechanism by which omalizumab improves asthma symptoms.


IgE; allergy; asthma; basophil; omalizumab

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