Immunohistochemical characterization of the cellular infiltrate in airway mucosa of toluene diisocyanate (TDI)-induced asthma: comparison with allergic asthma

J Korean Med Sci. 1998 Feb;13(1):21-6. doi: 10.3346/jkms.1998.13.1.21.


Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) is the most prevalent agent in occupational asthma (OA) in Korea. The immuno-pathologic mechanism for TDI-induced bronchoconstriction remains to be clarified. We studied the immunohistochemical finding of inflammatory cells in bronchial mucosa in subjects with TDI-induced asthma. Fiberoptic bronchial biopsy specimens were obtained from nine subjects with TDI-induced asthma. Six allergic asthma sensitive to house dust mite were enrolled as controls. Bronchial biopsy specimens were examined by immunohistology with a panel of monoclonal antibodies to mast cell tryptase (AA1), secretary form of eosinophil cationic protein (EG2), pan T-lymphocyte (CD3) and neutrophil elastase (NE). There was a significant increase in the number of AA1+, EG2+ and NE+ cells in TDI-induced asthma compared to those of allergic asthma (p=0.02, p=0.04, p=0.03, respectively). No significant differences were observed in the number of CD3+ cells (p=0.27). These findings support the view that neutrophil recruitment together with eosinophil and mast cell, may contribute to the bronchoconstriction induced by TDI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Asthma / chemically induced
  • Asthma / immunology*
  • Asthma / pathology
  • Bronchi / cytology
  • Bronchi / immunology*
  • Bronchi / pathology
  • Eosinophils / cytology
  • Eosinophils / immunology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Male
  • Mast Cells / cytology
  • Mast Cells / immunology
  • Middle Aged
  • Mucous Membrane / immunology
  • Neutrophils / cytology
  • Neutrophils / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Toluene 2,4-Diisocyanate / adverse effects*


  • Toluene 2,4-Diisocyanate