Author(s): Mawhorter SD, Stephany DA, Ottesen EA, Nutman TB, Mawhorter SD, Stephany DA, Ottesen EA, Nutman TB
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Abstract Activation is central to the eosinophil's functional role as an immune responder cell. To evaluate such activation in cells freshly isolated from peripheral blood, a method for whole-blood immunostaining and flow cytometry-based eosinophil selection was developed. Simultaneous comparison of purified eosinophils and whole-blood cells revealed significant differences in the levels of expression of various surface molecules, which suggested that the purification process activated the eosinophils. Subsequent analyses were conducted with the whole-blood assay. When eosinophils from helminth-infected persons (n = 18) were compared with those from normal individuals (n = 10), the early activation marker CD69 was found to be significantly increased (geometric mean (GM) = 4.3 vs. 1.0\%, p = 0.04). The granulocyte activation marker CD66 was also up-regulated on eosinphils from helminth patients (GM = 53.3 vs. 31.0\%, p = 0.044), as was the tetraspan family molecule CD81 (TAPA-1; GM = 79.4 vs. 48.2\%, p = 0.02). Conversely, in vivo CD23 (FcepsilonRII) expression on eosinophils was decreased in the presence of parasitic infection (GM = 0.9 vs. 5.7\%, p = 0.02). Expression of the eosinophil surface molecules CD69, CD81, and CD23 was significantly enhanced after cytokine stimulation in vitro with IL-3 or GM-CSF. In vivo, specific anthelmintic therapy resulted in decreased CD66 and CD25 expression (p < 0.05 compared with pretreatment) to levels approaching those seen in uninfected normal individuals. These findings indicate the dynamic nature of eosinophil surface molecules and demonstrate an important role for whole-blood staining in developing an understanding of the nature of eosinophil activation and of their role in inflammatory reactions to helminth parasites.
This article was published in J Immunol
and referenced in Journal of Infectious Diseases and Diagnosis