UNIT 3.24 Generation and Characterization of Mouse Basophils from Bone Marrow and Purification of Basophils from Spleen

  1. Tomohiro Yoshimoto1,
  2. Kenji Nakanishi2

Published Online: 1 AUG 2012

DOI: 10.1002/0471142735.im0324s98

Current Protocols in Immunology

Current Protocols in Immunology

How to Cite

Yoshimoto, T. and Nakanishi, K. 2012. Generation and Characterization of Mouse Basophils from Bone Marrow and Purification of Basophils from Spleen. Current Protocols in Immunology. 98:IV:3.24:3.24.1–3.24.16.

Author Information

  1. 1

    Laboratory of Allergic Diseases, Institute for Advanced Medical Sciences, Hyogo College of Medicine, Hyogo, Japan

  2. 2

    Department of Immunology and Medical Zoology, Hyogo College of Medicine, Hyogo, Japan

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 AUG 2012
  2. Published Print: AUG 2012


Basophils are rare circulating granulocytes that originate from progenitor cells in the bone marrow and have been considered important effector cells in IgE-mediated allergic inflammation. Basophils constitute <1% of blood leukocytes and are usually absent or present only in small numbers in tissues. They may, however, be recruited to inflammatory sites when an antigen is present and contribute immediately to hypersensitivity reactions. Basophils can therefore serve as primary effector cells in allergic disorders. Despite a large pool of experimental evidence that has led to the discovery of these functional attributes of basophils, many questions regarding their contribution to these immune responses remain unanswered. This is due, in part, to the lack of methods for generation and purification of basophils and the lack of animal models appropriate for their functional analysis. Recent studies, however, have revealed a role for basophils as antigen-presenting cells that preferentially induce Th2 cells in response to complexes of antigen plus antigen-specific IgE, to protease allergens, or to helminth parasites in vitro and in vivo through the production of “early IL-4” and the presentation to CD4+ T cells of complexes of peptide plus MHC class II molecules. These findings have uncovered previously unknown functional characteristics of basophils. Knowledge of these and other functional properties of basophils may translate into the design of novel therapeutic strategies for Th2-IgE-mediated diseases, such as bronchial asthma. In this unit, protocols that will enable the study of mouse basophils are described. Curr. Protoc. Immunol. 98:3.24.1-3.24.16. © 2012 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


  • mouse basophils;
  • bone marrow;
  • spleen;
  • antigen-presenting cells;
  • cytokine;
  • FcɛRI