Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Allergic contact dermatitis is a delayed type hypersensitivity reaction mediated by allergen specific T-lymphocytes. Allergen exposure leads to the activation of specific T-lymphocytes, which subsequently start to produce and release a vast array of cytokines and chemokines. However, the list of relevant genes taking part in the elicitation phase of contact dermatitis is not complete. In this study, we evaluate the use of the high-density microarray technology, which enable us to assess the global gene expression in allergen-stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). We included 3 chromium-allergic patients and 3 non-allergic controls in the study. Cultures of PBMC were established from each participant and stimulated with 100 ug/ul CrCl3 or media alone. The cell cultures were grown for 24 hours and the gene expression was analysed using an Affymetrix GeneChip(R) Array. Of the genes that exhibited differences of expression (p 〈 0.01) in allergen-activated PBMC from patients compared to controls, 54%(159/294) displayed increased activity and 46%(136/294) displayed decreased activity. Of the 159 up-regulated genes, 41 genes had a fold change above 1.50 and 30 genes among the 136 down-regulated genes had a fold change below -1.5. A significant number of the genes that showed differential expression in the cell cultures established from the allergic patients are known to be involved in immune responses and inflammation. The data indicates that the method of microarrays is a valuable tool for investigating the gene expression profile in our model system for allergic contact dermatitis.
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