Th2-associated immunity to bacteria in teenagers and susceptibility to asthma

Hollams, E.M., Hales, B.J., Bachert, C., Huvenne, W., Parsons, F., de Klerk, N.H., Serralha, M., Holt, B.J., Ahlstedt, S., Thomas, W.R., Sly, P.D. and Holt, P.G. (2010) Th2-associated immunity to bacteria in teenagers and susceptibility to asthma. The European Respiratory Journal, 36 3: 509-516. doi:10.1183/09031936.00184109

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Author Hollams, E.M.
Hales, B.J.
Bachert, C.
Huvenne, W.
Parsons, F.
de Klerk, N.H.
Serralha, M.
Holt, B.J.
Ahlstedt, S.
Thomas, W.R.
Sly, P.D.
Holt, P.G.
Title Th2-associated immunity to bacteria in teenagers and susceptibility to asthma
Journal name The European Respiratory Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0903-1936
Publication date 2010-09-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1183/09031936.00184109
Volume 36
Issue 3
Start page 509
End page 516
Total pages 8
Place of publication Lausanne, Switzerland
Publisher European Respiratory Society
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Bacterial colonisation of the airways is associated with increased risk of childhood asthma. Immunoglobulin (Ig)E against bacterial antigens has been reported in some asthmatics, suggesting a role for bacterial-specific type-2 immunity in disease pathogenesis. We aimed to investigate relationships between bacterial-specific IgE amongst teenagers and asthma susceptibility.

We measured titres of IgE against Haemophilus influenzae, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Staphylococcus aureus in 1,380 teenagers, and related these to asthma symptomatology and immunophenotypes.

IgE titres against S. aureus-derived enterotoxins were highest amongst atopics and were associated with asthma risk. Surprisingly, IgE titres against H. influenzae and S. pneumoniae surface antigens were higher, not stratified by atopy and independently associated with decreased asthma risk.

The positive association between type-2 immunity to S. aureus and asthma phenotypes probably reflects IgE-mediated effector cell activation via enterotoxin super antigens which are secreted in soluble form. The contrasting benign nature of type-2 immunity to H. influenzae and S. pneumoniae antigens may reflect their lower availability in soluble forms that can crosslink IgE receptors. We theorise that instead they may be processed by antigen presenting cells and presented to type-2 memory cells leading to mucosal secretion of interleukin (IL)-4/IL-13, a mechanism widely recognised in other tissues to attenuate T-helper-1 associated bacterial-induced inflammation.

Copyright © 2011 by the European Respiratory Society
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Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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Created: Wed, 17 Nov 2010, 21:30:23 EST