Histamine: A mediator of inflammation

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146 Scopus citations


Histamine and its receptors, including the recently discovered receptors (H3 and H4), novel sources of histamine, and the place of histamine in mediator networks continue to be areas of great interest. The 4 major subtypes of histamine receptors, H1 to H4, differ in their location, second messengers, and histamine-binding characteristics. In addition, it would appear that different histamine receptor agonists and antagonists bind to different portions of the receptor complex. A fifth receptor subtype, the intracellular H1C, has only been defined by its location within cell types that are not traditionally associated with histamine. In airway tissue, most cells express at least 1 subtype of histamine receptor; however, blockade of these receptors does not completely abolish the inflammatory response. In addition, some H1-antihistamines might also exert anti-inflammatory effects by pathways independent of H 1-receptor binding. Studies of selected second-generation H 1-antihistamines have shown that these agents inhibit the release of certain cytokines from basophils, acting at a point down-stream from the calcium signaling pathway. It has not yet been determined whether this action represents a class effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S53-S59
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number4 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Oct 1 2003


  • Antihistamines
  • Basophils
  • Calcium signaling
  • Cytokines
  • Mast cells
  • Receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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