Send to

Choose Destination
J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1993 Aug;92(2):313-24.

Activation of CD4+ T cells, increased TH2-type cytokine mRNA expression, and eosinophil recruitment in bronchoalveolar lavage after allergen inhalation challenge in patients with atopic asthma.

Author information

Department of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, National Heart and Lung Institute, London, England.



We have examined whether the local eosinophilia provoked by inhalational allergen challenge of patients with atopic asthma is associated with the appearance, in vivo, of activated TH2-type T helper lymphocytes.


Fifteen patients with atopic asthma had bronchial wash and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) 24 hours after allergen or diluent challenge separated by at least 21 days.


There was an increase in eosinophils in both bronchial wash (p = 0.01) and BAL (p = 0.02) after allergen challenge but not after diluent challenge. Activation of CD4+ BAL T cells was suggested by an increase in the expression of CD25 shown by flow cytometry after allergen challenge, when compared with diluent (p = 0.02). There was no evidence of activation of CD8 T cells. By in situ hybridization after allergen challenge as compared with diluent, increases were shown in the numbers of cells expressing mRNA for interleukin-4 (IL-4) (p = 0.005), IL-5 (p = 0.01), and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (p = 0.03) but not IL-3, IL-2, or interferon-gamma. In situ hybridization of BAL cells after immunomagnetic separation of CD2-positive and CD2-negative cell populations showed that IL-4 and IL-5 mRNAs were associated with T lymphocytes after allergen challenge. BAL and bronchial wash eosinophilia closely correlated with maximal late fall in forced expiratory volume in 1 second after allergen challenge.


Cytokines produced by activated TH2-type CD4+ T cells in the airway may contribute to late asthmatic responses by mechanisms that include eosinophil accumulation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center