Macrophages Regulators of Sex Differences in Asthma?

Barbro N. Melgert*, Timothy B. Oriss, Zengbiao Qi, Barbara Dixon-McCarthy, Marie Geerlings, Machteld N. Hylkema, Anuradha Ray

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

117 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Females are more susceptible to development of asthma than are males. In a mouse model of ovalbumin-induced airway inflammation, with aggravated disease in females compared with males, we studied interactions between immune and resident lung cells during asthma development to elucidate which processes are affected by sex. We studied numbers of regulatory T cells (Tregs), effector T cells, myeloid dendritic cells (mDCs), and alternatively activated macrophages (AAM Phi), and their functional capabilities. Male and female mice had comparable Treg numbers in lung tissue and comparable Treg function, but effector T cells had expanded to a greater extent in lungs of females after ovalbumin exposure. This difference in T cell expansion was therefore not the result of lack of Treg control, but appeared to be driven by a greater number of inflammatory mDCs migrating from the lungs to lymph nodes in females. Resident lung cells can influence mDC migration, and AAM Phi in lung tissue were found to be involved. Artificially elevating the number of AAM Phi in lung tissue increased the migration of mDCs and airway inflammation. We found greater numbers of AAM Phi in female lungs than in males; we therefore postulate that AAM Phi are involved in increased airway inflammation found in female mice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)595-603
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May-2010

Keywords

  • myeloid dendritic cells
  • allergy
  • regulatory T cells
  • lung
  • sex
  • ALLERGIC AIRWAY INFLAMMATION
  • CD4(+) T-CELLS
  • DENDRITIC CELLS
  • ALTERNATIVE ACTIVATION
  • INHALED ANTIGEN
  • IN-VIVO
  • DISEASE
  • MICE
  • POPULATIONS
  • SUPPRESSION

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