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Blood. 1998 Mar 1;91(5):1633-43.

In vitro regulation of FcepsilonRIalpha expression on human basophils by IgE antibody.

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Johns Hopkins Asthma and Allergy Center, Baltimore, MD 21224, USA.


In vivo studies suggested the possibility of an IgE-dependent regulation of high-affinity (FcepsilonRI) IgE receptor expression on basophils. The current studies extend these observations to in vitro cultures of human basophils. Incubation of basophils for 3 to 4 weeks resulted in a slow dissociation of IgE antibody, during which time FcepsilonRI expression decreased, as measured by flow cytometry using the anti-FcepsilonRIalpha monoclonal antibody, 22E7, or by measuring FcRIalpha mass by Western blotting of whole-cell lysates. Culture of basophils with IgE resulted in upregulation of FcepsilonRIalpha expression by both flow cytometry and Western blotting of whole-cell lysates. Upregulation followed a linear time course during 2 weeks of culture. The relative increase in FcepsilonRIalpha density depended on the starting density; with starting densities of FcepsilonRIalpha of 10,000 to 170,000 per basophil, the upregulation varied 20- to 1.1-fold, respectively. Upregulation occurred in high-purity basophils, was not influenced by IgG at concentrations up to 1 mg/mL, and was inhibited by dimeric IgE. Heat-inactivated IgE was less effective and the monoclonal antibody CGP51901 that prevents IgE binding to FcepsilonRIalpha blocked the ability of IgE to induce upregulation. The dose-response curve for IgE-induced upregulation had an effective concentration50 of 230 ng/mL. Although the receptor through which IgE induces this upregulation is not yet known, several characteristics suggest that the upregulation is mediated by IgE interacting through FcepsilonRIalpha itself.

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