Effect of coculture of rodent mast cells with murine chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD)-derived fibroblasts

Francesca Levi-Schaffer*, Varda Segal, Dana Baram, Yoseph A. Mekori

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


We investigated whether murine chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD)-derived skin fibroblasts maintain the viability and functional activity of rat peritoneal connective tissue-mast cells (CTMCs) and whether they affect the change in phenotype of mouse bone marrow-derived mastcells (BMMCs). Skin fibroblasts were isolated before the development of fibrosis (day 5), during overt fibrosis (day 28), and after recovery from fibrosis (day 120). cGVHD fibroblasts of days 5 and 28 exhibited enhanced proliferation, a property that was maintained through several subclutures. CTMCs adhered to the same extent, did not divide, and maintained their viability in all the different cultures. When CTMCs were activated with compound 48 80, they released ∼80% of their histamine content, indicating that coculture with cGVHD fibroblasts did not adversely affect CTMC function. The amount of histamine found in the medium of 8 days CTMC/cGVHD fibroblast coculture was similar to that found in control culture. These findings suggest that the degranulation of dermal MCs, characteristic of cGVHD, is not due to a direct activating effect of the cGVHD fibroblasts on the MCs. BMMCs seeded on cGVHD fibroblasts acquired the capacity for safranin staining and increased their histamine content, indicative of a change to CTMCs. Thus, cGVHD fibroblasts are able to provide a microenvironment adequate for maintaining viability and activity of CTMCs and for promoting maturation and change in phenotype of BMMCs.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)501-509
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1992

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Reprint requests: Francesca Levi-Schaffer, PhD, Department of Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem 91010, Israel. *Francesca LeviSchaffer, PhD, was supported by the U.S.A.-Israel Binational Foundation Grant No. 86-00154/ 1, and RGK Foun-dation grant. l/1/33597


  • Rat peritoneal mast cells
  • chronic graft-versus-host disease
  • coculture
  • fibroblasts
  • mouse bone marrow-derived mast cells


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