Indexed on: 17 Apr '12Published on: 17 Apr '12Published in: Molecular medicine reports
Astragaloside IV (AS-IV) has been noted for its reduction of eosinophilic airway inflammation in a murine model of chronic asthma. To gain a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in this anti-inflammatory phenomenon, the effect of AS-IV on human blood eosinophils was studied in vitro. Eosinophils were isolated from the blood of patients with mild atopic asthma, preincubated with AS-IV for 1 h and stimulated in the presence or absence of the house dust mite allergen Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Der p) 1 for 4 h. The survival of the eosinophils at 48 h was investigated using trypan blue and the surface expression of CC chemokine receptor 3 (CCR3) and intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) by the eosinophils was analyzed using flow cytometry. The secretion of cytokines in the supernatants and the chemotaxis of the eosinophils were measured by ELISA and the transwell system, respectively. Der p 1 was found to prolong the survival of the eosinophils. Similarly, the expression of CCR3 and ICAM-1, secretion of interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-5, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α and the granulocyte macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) and transmigration of the eosinophils were increased in the presence of Der p 1. However, these inductive effects on the eosinophils were significantly inhibited by AS-IV (50 µg/ml). These findings suggest that AS-IV modulates eosinophil activation and trafficking in response to Der p 1 and may therefore be a useful therapeutic option in eosinophilic asthma.