The many faces of systemic mastocytosis.

Research paper by L L Ispas, R A RA Henriksen, W J WJ Metzger

Indexed on: 31 Jul '01Published on: 31 Jul '01Published in: Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology


This short review article will augment the reader's knowledge of mast cell physiology and will offer an overview of current information on the pathophysiology, heterogeneity, and treatment of human mastocystosis.Articles published since 1980, textbooks, information from computerized databases, references identified from bibliographies of relevant articles, and books published in the last 10 years.Mastocytosis is a complex disease with a multitude of clinical presentations, often misdiagnosed, which can embrace characteristics of other diseases and generate a chameleon-like picture. Mast cells possess many important physiologic functions in the human body, but as a consequence of poorly understood events, they can also start a cascade of pathologic reactions. Although a great deal is known about mechanisms involved in physiologic and pathologic processes of mast cells, many areas are waiting to be explored in this millennium.