Contrast media are incomplete secretagogues acting on human basophils and mast cells isolated from heart and lung, but not skin tissue

Research paper by A. Genovese, C. Stellato, V. Patella, B. Lamparter-Schummert, G. de Crescenzo, M. Adt, G. Marone

Indexed on: 01 Sep '96Published on: 01 Sep '96Published in: International journal of clinical & laboratory research


To investigate the mechanisms of anaphylactoid reactions to radiocontrast media, in vitro mediator release induced by three iodinated contrast agents was examined using peripheral blood basophils and mast cells purified from human lung parenchyma, heart, and skin tissues. Three iodinated contrast agents, sodium and meglumine salts of ioxaglic acid, sodium and meglumine salts of ioxithalamic acid, and ioversol, were incubated with basophils purified from peripheral blood and human mast cells isolated and purified from different anatomical sites. Release of preformed (histamine and tryptase) and de novo synthesized mediators (prostaglandin D2 and leukotriene C4) into the supernatans was determined at various contrast medium concentrations after incubation for 60 min. Ioxaglate (0.2–0.3 M), ioxithalamate (0.3–0.5 M), and to a lesser extent ioversol (0.3–0.5 M) induced histamine release from basophils in a concentration-dependent manner. All three induced the release of preformed mediators (histamine and tryptase) from human lung, but not from skin mast cells. They also induced histamine and tryptase release from human heart mast cells. However, they did not induce the de novo synthesis of leukotriene C4 or prostaglandin D2 from human basophils or any type of mast cell examined. Cross-linking of IgE by anti-IgE induced the release of leukotriene C4 or prostaglandin D2 from human basophils or mast cells. Mannitol, an osmotic stimulus, induced the release of histamine from human basophils, but to a lesser extent from mast cells. These results show that different contrast media can differ in their ability to release mediators from enriched preparations of human basophils and mast cells. The three contrast agents examined act on basophils and mast cells as incomplete secretagogues, causing the release of preformed mediators, but not the de novo synthesis of chemical mediators. It may be useful to measure plasma tryptase levels to detect adverse reactions caused by iodinated radiographic contrast materials.