Cite this as: M. Okano, T. Fujiwara, T. Haruna, S. Kariya, S. Makihara, T. Higaki and K. Nishizaki, Clinical & Experimental Allergy, 2011 (41) 171–178.
Background Fungi and/or Staphylococcus aureus enterotoxins (SEs) may participate in the pathogenesis of eosinophilic inflammation in cases of chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP).
Objective We sought to determine the effects of fungal antigens on eosinophilia-associated cellular responses in nasal polyps.
Methods Dispersed nasal polyp cells (DNPCs) were prepared from 13 patients with CRSwNP. DNPCs were cultured with fungal extracts (Aspergillus, Alternaria and Candida) or SEB for 72 h, after which the levels of IL-5, IL-13 and RANTES were measured within the supernatant. Responses to β-d-glucan, mannan and chitin were also examined.
Results 38.5%, 69.2% and 30.8% of DNPCs produced IL-5, IL-13 and RANTES, respectively, in response to 200 μg/mL of Aspergillus. 53.8%, 53.8% and 7.7% of DNPCs produced IL-5, IL-13 and RANTES, respectively, in response to 200 μg/mL of Alternaria. 53.8%, 38.5% and 15.4% of DNPCs produced IL-5, IL-13 and RANTES, respectively, in response to 200 μg/mL of Candida. All DNPCs produced these cytokines in response to 0.1 μg/mL of SEB. SEB induced significantly greater cytokine levels than the fungal extracts. No correlation between cytokine production following exposure to each of the fungal extracts or SEB and various clinical features, including nasal polyp eosinophilia and radiological severity of sinusitis was observed. Neither sensitization to fungus nor comorbidity with bronchial asthma was correlated with the fungal extract-induced cytokine production by DNPCs. β-d-glucan, mannan and chitin did not induce significant cytokine production.
Conclusions These results suggest that, although DNPCs produce IL-5, IL-13 and RANTES in response to fungal extracts, fungal antigens including major carbohydrates are less capable of inducing eosinophilia-associated cellular responses in nasal polyps than SEB.