JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, N.I.H., EXTRAMURAL
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Inducible Bronchus-Associated Lymphoid Tissue (iBALT) Attenuates Pulmonary Pathology in a Mouse Model of Allergic Airway Disease.

Inducible Bronchus Associated Lymphoid Tissue (iBALT) is an ectopic lymphoid tissue associated with severe forms of chronic lung diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, rheumatoid lung disease, hypersensitivity pneumonitis and asthma, suggesting that iBALT may exacerbate these clinical conditions. However, despite the link between pulmonary pathology and iBALT formation, the role of iBALT in pathogenesis remains unknown. Here we tested whether the presence of iBALT in the lung prior to sensitization and challenge with a pulmonary allergen altered the biological outcome of disease. We found that the presence of iBALT did not exacerbate Th2 responses to pulmonary sensitization with ovalbumin. Instead, we found that mice with iBALT exhibited delayed Th2 accumulation in the lung, reduced eosinophil recruitment, reduced goblet cell hyperplasia and reduced mucus production. The presence of iBALT did not alter Th2 priming, but instead delayed the accumulation of Th2 cells in the lung following challenge and altered the spatial distribution of T cells in the lung. These results suggest that the formation of iBALT and sequestration of effector T cells in the context of chronic pulmonary inflammation may be a mechanism by which the immune system attenuates pulmonary inflammation and prevents excessive pathology.

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