Th17 responses are not altered by natural exposure to seasonal allergens in pollen-sensitive patients

Schramm, A. et al. (2016) Th17 responses are not altered by natural exposure to seasonal allergens in pollen-sensitive patients. Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology, 12(1), 55. (doi: 10.1186/s13223-016-0157-6) (PMID:27799958) (PMCID:PMC5078933)

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Background: Allergic rhinitis affects 10–30 % of the global population and this number is likely to increase in the forthcoming years. Moreover, it commonly co-exists with allergic asthma as a chronic allergic respiratory syndrome. While the involvement of Th2 cells in allergy is well understood, alterations of pro-inflammatory Th17 responses remain poorly characterized. The aim of our study was to determine whether natural seasonal allergen exposure causes changes in T cell subset characteristics in patients with allergic rhinitis and asthma. Methods: Sixteen patients with allergic rhinitis/atopic asthma (9M, 7F; age 31.8 ± 12.1) and 16 healthy controls were recruited into the study (9M, 7F; age 31.2 ± 5.3). Blood samples were collected from the patients 1–3 months before pollen season (visit 1), within 7 days of the appearance of pollen/initiation of allergic symptoms (visit 2) and 2 weeks after visit 2 following the introduction of symptomatic treatment with antihistamines (visit 3). Flow cytometry was used to assess major T cell subsets (naïve, central memory, effector memory and CD45RA+ effector) and key T cell cytokine production (IFNγ, IL-17A, TNF and IL-4) using intracellular staining. Data were analyzed using repeated measures ANOVA and paired t test. Results: As expected, an increase in the percentage of IL‐4+ CD4+ cells was observed during natural pollen exposure in patients with allergic respiratory syndrome. No significant changes were observed in the production of other cytokines, including Th17 cells, which tended to be lower than in the control population but unchanged during pollen exposure. Introduction of antihistamine treatment led to only moderate changes in cytokine production from CD4 and CD8 T cells. Selective changes in CD8+ T cells were observed during natural pollen exposure including a decrease in transient cells (with features of CD45RA+ and CD45RO+ cells) and a decrease in the percentage of central memory cells in the peripheral circulation. Within the CD4 cell group the total percentage of CD45RA positive CD4 cells was increased during pollen exposure. Conclusions: Th1 and Th17 responses are not altered during pollen season but allergen exposure affects T cell activation and memory cell status in patients with allergic respiratory syndrome.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Czesnikiewicz-Guzik, Dr Marta and Sagan, Ms Agnieszka and Mikolajczyk, Dr Tomasz and Maciag, Miss Joanna
Authors: Schramm, A., Jasiewicz-Honkisz, B., Osmenda, G., Wilk, G., Siedlinski, M., Sagan, A., Matusik, P. T., Maciag, J., Sliwa, T., Czesnikiewicz-Guzik, M., and Mikolajczyk, T.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Cardiovascular & Metabolic Health
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Dental School
Journal Name:Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology
Publisher:BioMed Central
ISSN (Online):1710-1492
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 The Authors
First Published:First published in Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology 12(1):55
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
651771ImmunoTensionTomasz GuzikEuropean Commission (EC)631773RI CARDIOVASCULAR & MEDICAL SCIENCES