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Lancet. 1993 Apr 17;341(8851):989-90.

Leukotriene E4 and granulocytic infiltration into asthmatic airways.

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Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Finland.


Sulphidopeptide leukotrienes are potent bronchoconstrictors and increase bronchial hyperreactivity, one of the hallmarks of asthma. We have demonstrated that leukotriene LTE4, the most stable of the sulphidopeptide leukotrienes, elicited an increase in the numbers of eosinophils and neutrophils in the lamina propria of the airway mucosa 4 h after inhalation in 4 asthmatic subjects. The numbers of eosinophils were, on average, 10-fold greater than those of neutrophils. There was no significant change in numbers of lymphocytes, plasma cells, mast cells, or macrophages. Since LTE4 recruits granulocytes, the potential of antisulphidopeptide leukotriene drugs as anti-inflammatory and "steroid-sparing" agents should be tested.

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