Background: Increased leucine-rich α2-glycoprotein-1 (LRG1) has been observed in plasma of individuals with various diseases. However, the role of LRG1 in allergic airway disease has not been investigated.
Objective: To explore the involvement of LRG1 in allergy and its cell origins.
Methods: The expression levels of LRG1 and its receptor transforming growth factor-beta receptor II (TGFBR2) in patients with allergic rhinitis (AR) and asthma (AS) were examined by flow cytometry, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
Results: LRG1 and soluble TGFBR2 expression in plasma of patients with AR and AS were markedly lower than that of healthy control (HC) subjects. Large proportions of CD123 + HLA-DR-, CD16+, CD4+, CD8+, CD14+, and CD19+ cells expressed LRG1, although the percentages of LRG1+ cells in these cell populations were lower in AR and AS patients. Up to 89.8 and 15.5 % of dispersed mast cells expressed LRG1 and TGFBR2. Moreover, allergen extract exposure significantly reduced LRG1 and TGFBR2 expression in the plasma and leukocytes of patients with AR and AS.
Conclusions: Reduced LRG1 and TGFBR2 levels in patients with allergic airway disorders are likely caused by inhibitory actions of allergens in LRG1 producing cells. Thus, LRG1 may be a key regulatory factor of allergic responses.
Keywords: Allergic airway disorder; LRG1; Leukocytes; Mast cells; TGFBR2.