Interferon-α antagonizes IL-3-mediated immunoregulatory functions of human basophils

Hagmann, Björn; Odermatt, Andrea; Eggel, Alexander; Dahinden, Clemens A.; Fux, Michaela (22 August 2013). Interferon-α antagonizes IL-3-mediated immunoregulatory functions of human basophils (Unpublished). In: 15th ICI (International Congress of Immunology). Milan, Italy.

Human basophils are major inflammatory cells in maintaining chronic allergic asthma. It has been published that interferon-α (IFN-α) improves clinical symptoms of asthma patients. In contrast, IL-3 exacerbates airway inflammation by inducing
IL-4, IL-8 and IL-13 secretion from human basophils thus regulating their immunoregulatory functions. Furthermore, IL-3 exceptionally promotes survival of basophils. Here, we assessed cellular response of human basophils treated with IFN-α alone or in combination with IL-3.
Our data show that IFN-α enhances apoptosis in purified human blood basophils compared to spontaneous apoptosis of controls or IFN-γ treated cells. Furthermore, we demonstrate that both IFN-α and FasL enhance apoptosis in human basophils with similar efficiency in a rather additive than synergistic way. IFN-α inhibits
IL-3-induced survival to a minor degree. Particularly however, it suppresses IL-3-induced de-novo production of IL-8 and IL-13 up to 80%. In contrast, the production of IL-4 is not affected. Analyses of signaling pathways reveal that IFN-α promotes prolonged phosphorylation of STAT1/STAT2. By using a pan-JAK inhibitor the phosphorylation of STAT1/STAT2 is inhibited and most importantly the pro-apoptotic effect of IFN-α is abolished. Although the phosphorylation of p38-MAPK in
IFN-α-treated cells is comparable to non-treated cells, inhibition of p-p38 activity abrogates IFN-α-enhanced apoptosis as well.
We conclude that IFN-α-enhanced apoptosis is tightly regulated by the cooperation of JAK/STAT and p38-MAPK pathways. Our study identifies IFN-α as a novel inhibitor of IL-3-induced IL-8 and IL-13 production of human basophils. Taken together our study may explain the improved clinical symptoms of asthma patients treated with IFN-α.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Haematology, Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Laboratory Medicine and Hospital Pharmacy (DOLS) > Institute for Immunology [discontinued]

UniBE Contributor:

Hagmann, Björn; Eggel, Alexander; Dahinden, Clemens A. and Fux, Michaela


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Dr. Michaela Fux

Date Deposited:

07 Jul 2015 14:21

Last Modified:

07 Jul 2015 14:21


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