Objectives and design: Effects of eosinophil proteins on airway goblet cell mucin release were investigated using primary hamster tracheal surface epithelial (HTSE) cell cultures.
Materials and methods: HTSE cells were metabolically labeled using 3H-glucosamine and chased in the presence of varying concentrations of eosinophil proteins. The amount of 3H-mucin in the spent media was measured by Sepharose CL-4B gel-filtration column chromatography. Possible cytotoxicity by the eosinophil proteins was assessed by measurements of both lactic dehydrogenase and mucin release during as well as after the treatment period.
Results: (1) Neither eosinophil cationic protein nor eosinophil-derived neurotoxin affected mucin release at concentrations up to 10(-6) M; (2) both major basic protein (MBP) and eosinophil peroxidase (EPO) inhibited mucin release in a dose-dependent fashion, and the inhibitory effect by these proteins appeared to be reversible; (3) neither MBP nor EPO caused any apparent cytotoxicity at concentrations up to 10(-6) M.
Conclusion: Eosinophil proteins such as MBP and EPO inhibit mucin release from primary HTSE cells without causing any apparent cytotoxicity.