Activation of human eosinophils by platelet-derived growth factor

Michael K. Bach, John R. Brashler, Barbara K. Stout, Herbert G. Johnson, Martin E. Sanders, Alice H. Lin, Robert R. Gorman, Michael J. Bienkowski, Teruko Ishizaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Activated eosinophils are believed to be major contributors to the chronic inflammatory sequelae of asthma, but the details of the mechanism of eosinophil activation in vivo are unknown. In our search for physiologically important modes of eosinophil activation, we studied the effects of recombinant human platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) on human peripheral blood eosinophils. We compared two activation end-points: secretion of granule contents, exemplified by the release of eosinophil peroxidase (EPO), and eosinophilderived neurotoxin (EDN), and the generation of active oxygen metabolites (O2 production). PDGFc-sis dose dependently stimulated the secretion of large amounts of EPO and EDN from eosinophils. Higher concentrations of PDGF induced a dose-dependent O2 production, especially if the cells were first primed with low concentrations of phorbol ester. These activities were not seen with the AA homodimer of PDGF, suggesting that the activation was receptor dependent. However, several attempts to directly demonstrate the existence of such receptors were unsuccessful. The magnitude of the secretory response to PDGF, and the realization that eosinophils could be easily exposed to this substance as they travel towards the lung, suggests the possibility that this growth factor may be a physiologically important activator of eosinophils in the pulmonary inflammation which is associated with asthma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-129
Number of pages9
JournalInternational archives of allergy and immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1992


  • Eosinophils
  • Eosinophils peroxidase
  • Oxygen Metabolites
  • Platelet-derived growth factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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