Equally contributing authors.
Mast cells determine the magnitude of bacterial toxin-induced skin inflammation
Article first published online: 17 JUL 2008
© 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 Blackwell Munksgaard
Volume 18, Issue 2, pages 160–166, February 2009
How to Cite
Metz, M., Magerl, M., Kühl, N. F., Valeva, A., Bhakdi, S. and Maurer, M. (2009), Mast cells determine the magnitude of bacterial toxin-induced skin inflammation. Experimental Dermatology, 18: 160–166. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0625.2008.00778.x
- Issue published online: 12 JAN 2009
- Article first published online: 17 JUL 2008
- Accepted for publication 13 June 2008
- bacterial infection;
- chronic inflammation;
- chronic urticaria;
- innate immunity;
- mast cells
Abstract: Mast cells are known to be important effector cells in innate immune responses to bacterial infections. However, up to now, neither the mechanisms nor the relevance of mast cell degranulation in innate skin immune responses to bacteria have been adequately addressed. In this article, we show that the bacterial toxins streptolysin O (SLO) and α-toxin potently induce degranulation of mast cells in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, intradermal injection of the toxins results in pronounced skin inflammation, which either resolves quickly within a few h (SLO-induced inflammation) or presents a chronic process with ongoing inflammation for weeks (α-toxin). Interestingly, mast cells mediated the inflammatory effects of SLO, but in contrast limited inflammatory skin responses to α-toxin. These findings further support the hypothesis that mast cells are critically involved in initiating and modulating optimal host responses to bacteria by either inflammatory or anti-inflammatory effects, depending on the course of the host reaction induced by the pathogen.