High-affinity immunoglobulin E receptor (FcεRI)-bearing eosinophils, mast cells, macrophages and Langerhans' cells in allergen-induced late-phase cutaneous reactions in atopic subjects

S. Ying, L. T. Barata, Q. Meng, J. A. Grant, J. Barkans, S. R. Durham, A. B. Kay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

46 Scopus citations


We have used in situ hybridization (ISH) and immunohistochemistry (IHC) to investigate the kinetics of the expression for FcεRI mRNA (α-, β- and γ-chains), the α-chain protein product, as well as the phenotype of the mRNA- or protein-positive cells in allergen-induced late-phase skin reactions in atopic subjects. Compared with diluent controls, there were significant increases in the total numbers of mRNA+ cells for the α-, β-and γ-chains for FcεRI at all time-points (6, 24 and 48 hr) after allergen challenge (P<0.01). By double IHC/ISH significant increases in α-, βand γ-chain mRNA+ macrophages, eosinophils, mast cells and CD1a+ cells were also observed after allergen challenge (P<0.05). The distribution of FcεRI subunit (α-, β-, or γ-chain) mRNA+ co-localization was CD68+ macrophages (42-47%), EG2+ eosinophils (33-39%), tryptase+ mast cells (5-11%) and CD1a+ Langerhans' cells (2-4%). Using single IHC, significant increases in the total number of FcεRI protein+ cells (P<0.01) were observed 24 and 48 hr after allergen challenge. Double IHC showed that the distribution of FcεRI+ cells was tryptase+ mast cells (33%), CD68+ macrophages (36%), EG2+ eosinophils (20%), CD1a+ Langerhans' cells (4%) and unidentified cells (7%), at the 24-hr allergen-challenged sites. These observations suggest that the cutaneous late-phase reaction in man is associated with up-regulation of FcεRI on eosinophils, macrophages, mast cells and Langerhans' cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)281-288
Number of pages8
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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