The effects of overexpression of histamine releasing factor (HRF) in a transgenic mouse model

Yueh Chiao Yeh, Liping Xie, Jacqueline M. Langdon, Allen C. Myers, Sun Young Oh, Zhou Zhu, Susan M. Macdonald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: Asthma is a disease that affects all ages, races and ethnic groups. Its incidence is increasing both in Westernized countries and underdeveloped countries. It involves inflammation, genetics and environment and therefore, proteins that exacerbate the asthmatic, allergic phenotype are important. Our laboratory purified and cloned a histamine releasing factor (HRF) that was a complete stimulus for histamine and IL-4 secretion from a subpopulation of allergic donors' basophils. Throughout the course of studying HRF, it was uncovered that HRF enhances or primes histamine release and IL- 13 production from all anti-IgE antibody stimulated basophils. In order to further delineate the biology of HRF, we generated a mouse model. Methodology/Principal Findings: We constructed an inducible transgenic mouse model with HRF targeted to lung epithelial cells, via the Clara cells. In antigen nai{dotless}̈ve mice, overproduction of HRF yielded increases in BAL macrophages and statistical increases in mRNA levels for MCP-1 in the HRF transgenic mice compared to littermate controls. In addition to demonstrating intracellular HRF in the lung epithelial cells, we have also been able to document HRF's presence extracellularly in the BAL fluid of these transgenic mice. Furthermore, in the OVA challenged model, we show that HRF exacerbates the allergic, asthmatic responses. We found statistically significant increases in serum and BAL IgE, IL-4 protein and eosinophils in transgenic mice compared to controls. Conclusions/Significance: This mouse model demonstrates that HRF expression enhances allergic, asthmatic inflammation and can now be used as a tool to further dissect the biology of HRF.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere11077
JournalPloS one
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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