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Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1999 Feb;120(2):225-32.

Ozone effects on the immediate-phase response to allergen in the nasal airways of allergic asthmatic subjects.

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Children's Memorial Hospital, Northwestern University Medical School, USA.


Epidemiologic and clinical trials have suggested that exposure to ozone increases airway hyperresponsiveness and inflammatory response to inhaled nasal allergen challenge in allergic asthmatic subjects. Previous studies have demonstrated an increased late-phase response to nasal allergen challenge; however, the early-phase response is unknown. We sought to characterize the early-phase response by measuring mast-cell inflammatory mediators and cellular influx at time points immediately following ozone exposure and subsequent allergen challenge. A cohort of mild, asymptomatic dust mite--sensitive asthmatic subjects was identified. Each subject underwent two separate exposures to both 0.4 ppm ozone and clean air in a randomized manner. Nasal lavage was performed before and after each exposure. Nasal allergen was then administered to a defined clinical end point, followed by nasal lavage. Differential cell counts and mast-cell products were identified in each lavage specimen. The mast-cell mediators tryptase and prostaglandin D2 were analyzed, as was a marker of epithelial cell permeability, albumin. Although allergen produced an increase in early-onset mediator release (mast cell-derived), no enhancement was noted after exposure to ozone. Neutrophil and eosinophil inflammatory mediators were not increased after ozone exposure or enhanced after allergen exposure, although ozone did enhance eosinophilic influx after exposure to allergen. Ozone exposure does not promote early-phase--response mediator release or enhance the response to allergen challenge in the nasal airways of extrinsic asthmatic subjects. Ozone, however, may promote an inflammatory cell influx, which helps induce a more significant late-phase response in this population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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