Following allergen exposure, sensitized Brown-Norway rats develop airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) and eosinophilic inflammation together with an increase in activated T cells (CD25+) in the airways. We tested the hypothesis that CD4+ T cells are involved directly in the acquisition of AHR. Spleen T cells from animals that were injected intraperitoneally on three consecutive days with ovalbumin/Al(OH)3, showed a dose-dependent proliferative response in vitro to ovalbumin, but not to bovine serum albumin, as measured by [3H]thymidine uptake. For total T-cell transfer, spleen cells obtained from donor rats 4 days after sensitization were depleted of adherent cells by a nylon wool column separation. CD4+ and CD8+ T cells were purified by immunomagnetic beads cell separation. Recipient naive rats were injected intravenously with 50 x 10(6) total T cells, 20 x 10(6) and 5 x 10(6) CD4+ cells, and 5 x 10(6) CD8+ cells, and were exposed to ovalbumin aerosol 24 hr afterwards. After a further 24 hr, airway responsiveness to acetylcholine (ACh) was measured and provocative concentration (PC) values PC100, PC200 and PC300) (the ACh concentration needed to achieve 100, 200 and 300% increase in lung resistance above baseline) were calculated. Airway responsiveness was significantly increased in recipients of sensitized total T cells compared with recipients of cells from saline-injected donor rats (P
Th2 T cell immune-driven inflammation plays an important role in allergic asthma. We studied the effect of counterbalancing Th1 T cells in an asthma model in Brown Norway rats that favors Th2 responses. Rats received i.v. transfers of syngeneic allergen-specific Th1 or Th2 cells, 24 h before aerosol exposure to allergen, and were studied 18-24 h later. Adoptive transfer of OVA-specific Th2 cells, but not Th1 cells, and OVA, but not BSA exposure, induced bronchial hyperresponsiveness (BHR) to acetylcholine and eosinophilia in a cell number-dependent manner. Importantly, cotransfer of OVA-specific Th1 cells dose-dependently reversed BHR and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) eosinophilia, but not mucosal eosinophilia. OVA-specific Th1 cells transferred alone induced mucosal eosinophilia, but neither BHR nor BAL eosinophilia. Th1 suppression of BHR and BAL eosinophilia was allergen specific, since cotransfer of BSA-specific Th1 cells with the OVA-specific Th2 cells was not inhibitory when OVA aerosol alone was used, but was suppressive with OVA and BSA challenge. Furthermore, recipients of Th1 cells alone had increased gene expression for IFN-gamma in the lungs, while those receiving Th2 cells alone showed increased IL-4 mRNA. Importantly, induction of these Th2 cytokines was inhibited in recipients of combined Th1 and Th2 cells. Anti-IFN-gamma treatment attenuated the down-regulatory effect of Th1 cells. Allergen-specific Th1 cells down-regulate efferent Th2 cytokine-dependent BHR and BAL eosinophilia in an asthma model via mechanisms that depend on IFN-gamma. Therapy designed to control the efferent phase of established asthma by augmenting down-regulatory Th1 counterbalancing mechanisms should be effective.
We examined the role of CD8+ T cells in a Brown-Norway rat model of asthma, using a monoclonal antibody to deplete CD8+ T cells. Ovalbumin (OA)-sensitized animals were given anti-CD8 antibody (0.5 mg/rat) intravenously 1 week prior to exposure to 1% OA aerosol and were studied 18-24 hr after aerosol exposure. Following administration of anti-CD8 antibody, CD8+ cells were reduced to
Certain strains of rats infested with the nematode parasite Nippostrongulus brasiliensis mount vigorous, persistent immunoglobulin E (IgE) responses. In the absence of parasites, adjuvants such as Bordatella pertussis or Al(OH)3 are needed to produce IgE responses to soluble antigens. These are short-lived, even in high IgE responder strains. In this study we have produced long-lived IgE responses in both low (Wistar) and high (Brown Norway) IgE responder strains of rats by repeated injections of ricin, a toxic lectin from castor beans, and phospholipase A2 (PLA2), a bee venom protein. Total IgE levels rose from 30 +/- 20 ng/ml to 39,000 +/- 7500 ng/ml in the Wistar rats compared with an increase from 120 +/- 100 ng/ml to 47,000 +/- 8000 ng/ml in the Brown Norway rats. An even greater (10(4)-fold) increase was seen in PLA2-specific IgE antibody levels. total and PLA2-specific IgE started to fall 6 weeks after treatment was stopped in the Wistar and after 12 weeks in the Brown Norway rats. The duration of the response was 204 and 248 days, respectively. The IgE-enhancing properties of ricin were compared in low, mid (Hooded Lister) and high IgE responder rats. Total IgE and PLA2-specific IgE but not IgG antibody (Ab) responses were enhanced in all animals given ricin and PLA2 but not in animals given ricin or PLA2 alone. The increase was greater in Wistar rats (48-fold) than in Brown Norway rats (eightfold) and by Day 24 the levels of both total and PLA2-specific IgE in three different strains were indistinguishable. PLA2-specific IgE antibody-secreting cells were detected in the spleen at a frequency of 1:5000. These results show: (i) that repeated immunization of rats with antigen and ricin produce a very large IgE response which was long-lived; (ii) that this response was indistinguishable in different IgE responder strains of rat; and (iii) that the IgE response declines earlier in low IgE responder strains of rats.
Ricin has been shown to enhance IgE production in the rat, probably through inhibition of suppressor T lymphocytes. We have studied further the effects of ricin on IgE titre and have determined its effects on antigen-induced airway inflammation and hyperreactivity in the Brown Norway rat. Immunization with ovalbumin (1-100 micrograms, intraperitoneally) produced dose-related increases in serum antigen-specific IgE titre. Ricin augmented the total IgE titre and caused about a 10-fold increase in the peak antigen-specific IgE titre. In sensitized animals, antigen challenge (three times with aerosolized ovalbumin every second day) caused a significant influx of eosinophils and neutrophils and significant airway hyperreactivity 24 hr after the third challenge. In sensitized animals that had also received ricin, the eosinophil and neutrophil influx was further significantly potentiated and a significant influx of lymphocytes also occurred. Thus, there was a relationship between the degree of sensitization and the magnitude of the inflammatory response. However, the enhanced airway inflammation in ricin-treated animals was not accompanied by a further enhancement of airway hyperreactivity. The present study demonstrates that ricin enhances IgE production and augments an antigen-induced inflammatory pathology but does not potentiate antigen-induced airway hyperreactivity.
Ricin, a toxic lectin from castor beans greatly enhances IgE responses to bee venom phospholipase A2 (PLA2) in high and low IgE responder strains of rat. The increase in IgE is accompanied by a 60% reduction in the number of CD8+ but not CD4+ T cells in the spleen. Optimal enhancement of IgE by ricin occurs when it is given at the same time as the antigen or 24 hr later, suggesting that it acts on cells which were activated as a consequence of immunization. Radio ligand-binding studies with 125I ricin were used to compare the number of ricin binding sites on CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. No difference was seen in either the affinity or the number of receptors for ricin on the CD4+ and CD8+ T cells of unimmunized rats. In contrast, CD8+ T cells taken from rats which had been immunized with 10 micrograms of PLA2 24 hr earlier demonstrated considerably more ricin receptors (3.9 x 10(7) +/- 2.2 x 10(6) binding sites/cell) than CD4+ T cells (3.19 x 10(6) +/- 1.08 x 10(6) binding sites/cell). However the affinity of the receptors for ricin was unchanged. Cytofluorographic analysis with fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-labelled ricin confirmed these observations and indicated that increased ricin binding occurred on a subpopulation of CD8+ T cells. The effect of CD8+ T cells on IgE regulation was investigated by adoptive transfer. 1 x 10(8) highly purified (> 98%) splenic CD8+ T cells collected from Brown Norway rats 3 days after immunization with 10 micrograms of PLA2 were adoptively transferred to naive, syngeneic recipients. The IgE antibody response to PLA2 + A1(OH)3 seen in these animals was reduced by 91%. Adoptive transfer of CD4+ T cells from the same donor animals did not induce suppression and nor did adoptive transfer of CD8+ T cells from animals given both ricin and PLA2. However, when recipients of CD8+ T cells taken from rats immunized with PLA2 were immunized with a different antigen [ovalbumin (OVA)] and A1(OH)3 the IgE antibody response was also suppressed, although to a lesser extent (66%). These results show that co-administration of ricin and PLA2 depletes a subpopulation of ricin-sensitive, early activated CD8+ T cells and that these CD8+ T cells are potent suppressors of the primary IgE response.