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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Enhancement of IgE-mediated histamine release from human basophils by viruses: role of interferon.

Human leukocytes maintained in culture are induced to release histamine when exposed to ragweed antigen E or anti-IgE. Leukocyte cultures incubated with virus (i.e. HSV-1, Influenza A, and Adeno-1) but not exposed to ragweed antigen E or anti-IgE fail to release histamine. If, however, leukocyte cultures are first exposed to virus and then to ragweed antigen E or anti-IgE, significant enhancement of histamine release occurs. Both infectious and inactivated virus enhance histamine release and the degree of enhancement is related to the concentration of virus and the length of the incubation. Tissue culture fluid harvested 8 h after exposure of leukocytes to virus contains a soluble factor which is capable of enhancing histamine release when added to fresh leukocyte cultures. This factor has all the properties of interferon including species specificity and cannot be dissociated from the antiviral activity of interferon. Moreover, both known inducers of interferon (poly I:poly C) and standard preparations of interferon are capable of enhancing histamine release. The enhancement of histamine release by interferon represents a new biological role for interferon.[1]


  1. Enhancement of IgE-mediated histamine release from human basophils by viruses: role of interferon. Ida, S., Hooks, J.J., Siraganian, R.P., Notkins, A.L. J. Exp. Med. (1977) [Pubmed]
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