Chitin induces accumulation in tissue of innate immune cells associated with allergy

Tiffany A. Reese, Hong Erh Liang, Andrew M. Tager, Andrew D. Luster, Nico Van Rooijen, David Voehringer, Richard M. Locksley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

527 Scopus citations

Abstract

Allergic and parasitic worm immunity is characterized by infiltration of tissues with interleukin (IL)-4- and IL-13-expressing cells, including T-helper-2 cells, eosinophils and basophils. Tissue macrophages assume a distinct phenotype, designated alternatively activated macrophages. Relatively little is known about the factors that trigger these host responses. Chitin, a widespread environmental biopolymer of N-acetyl-β-d-glucosamine, provides structural rigidity to fungi, crustaceans, helminths and insects. Here, we show that chitin induces the accumulation in tissue of IL-4-expressing innate immune cells, including eosinophils and basophils, when given to mice. Tissue infiltration was unaffected by the absence of Toll-like-receptor-mediated lipopolysaccharide recognition but did not occur if the injected chitin was pre-treated with the IL-4- and IL-13-inducible mammalian chitinase, AMCase, or if the chitin was injected into mice that overexpressed AMCase. Chitin mediated alternative macrophage activation in vivo and the production of leukotriene B4, which was required for optimal immune cell recruitment. Chitin is a recognition element for tissue infiltration by innate cells implicated in allergic and helminth immunity and this process can be negatively regulated by a vertebrate chitinase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)92-96
Number of pages5
JournalNature
Volume447
Issue number7140
DOIs
StatePublished - May 3 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Chitin induces accumulation in tissue of innate immune cells associated with allergy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Reese, T. A., Liang, H. E., Tager, A. M., Luster, A. D., Van Rooijen, N., Voehringer, D., & Locksley, R. M. (2007). Chitin induces accumulation in tissue of innate immune cells associated with allergy. Nature, 447(7140), 92-96. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature05746