Expression and Function of β1 Integrins on Human Eosinophils

Maria Cristina Seminario, Bruce S. Bochner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Eosinophils preferentially accumulate at sites of chronic allergic diseases such as bronchial asthma. The mechanisms by which selective eosinophil migration occurs are not fully understood. However, interactions of cell-surface adhesion molecules on the eosinophil with molecular counterligands on endothelial and epithelial cells, and on extracellular matrix proteins, are likely to be critical during the recruitment process. One possible mechanism for selective eosinophil recruitment involves the α4β1 (VLA-4) integrin which is not expressed on neutrophils. Correlations have been found between infiltration of eosinophils and endothelial expression of VCAM-1, the ligand for VLA-4, in the lungs of asthmatic individuals as well as in late phase reactions in the lungs, nose and skin. Epithelial and endothelial cells respond to the Th2-type cytokines IL-4 and IL-13 with selective de novo expression of VCAM-1, consistent with the possible role of VCAM-1/VLA-4 interactions in eosinophil influx during allergic inflammation. Both β1 and β2 integrins on eosinophils exist in a state of partial activation. For example, eosinophils can be maximally activated for adhesion to VCAM-1 or fibronectin after exposure to β1 integrin-activating antibodies or divalent cations, conditions that do not necessarily affect the total cell surface expression of β1 integrins. In contrast, cytokines like IL-5 prevent β1 integrin activation while promoting β2 integrin function. Furthermore, ligation of integrins can regulate the effector functions of the cell. For example, eosinophil adhesion via β1 and/or β2 integrins has been shown to alter a variety of functional responses including degranulation and apoptosis. Thus, integrins appear to be important in mediating eosinophil migration and activation in allergic inflammation. Strategies that interfere with these processes may prove to be useful for treatment of allergic diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-164
Number of pages8
JournalMemorias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Volume92 SUPPL. 2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1997

Keywords

  • Allergic diseases
  • Eosinophil
  • Interleukin
  • β1 integrins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)

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