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

Intracellular localization of interleukin-6 in eosinophils from atopic asthmatics and effects of interferon gamma.

Eosinophils, prominent cells in asthmatic inflammation, have been shown to synthesize, store, and release an array of up to 18 cytokines and growth factors, including interleukin-6 (IL-6). In this report, we show that IL-6 immunofluorescence localizes to the matrix of the crystalloid granule in peripheral blood eosinophils from atopic asthmatics using confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM). Granule localization of IL-6 was confirmed using dot-blot analysis and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) on subcellular fractions of highly purified eosinophils produced from density centrifugation across a 0% to 45% Nycodenz gradient. IL-6 was found to coelute with eosinophil crystalloid granule marker proteins, including eosinophil peroxidase ( EPO), major basic protein (MBP), arylsulfatase B, and beta-hexosaminidase. Immunoreactivity to IL-6 colocalized with granule- associated IL-2 and IL-5 in subfractionated eosinophils. We also made the novel and compelling observation that interferon gamma (IFNgamma), a Th1-type cytokine, stimulated an early elevation in eosinophil IL-6 immunoreactivity. A 2.5-fold enhancement of IL-6 immunoreactivity in eosinophil granules was observed within 10 minutes of IFNgamma treatment (500 U/mL), as determined by subcellular fractionation and CLSM. These findings suggest that IFNgamma has short-term effects on human eosinophil function and imply that a physiologic role exists for Th1-type cytokine modulation of Th2-type responses in these cells.[1]


  1. Intracellular localization of interleukin-6 in eosinophils from atopic asthmatics and effects of interferon gamma. Lacy, P., Levi-Schaffer, F., Mahmudi-Azer, S., Bablitz, B., Hagen, S.C., Velazquez, J., Kay, A.B., Moqbel, R. Blood (1998) [Pubmed]
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