The effect of omalizumab treatment on the low affinity immunoglobulin E receptor (CD23/FC epsilon RII) in patients with severe allergic asthma

Miri Assayag, Shabtai Moshel, Martin Kohan, Neville Berkman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Omalizumab is an anti-immunoglobulin E (IgE) monoclonal antibody used in the treatment of severe asthma. Its therapeutic efficacy is primarily attributed to reduction of serum-free IgE and in the expression of high-affinity IgE receptor, fc epsilon RI. However, its effect on the low-affinity IgE receptor fc epsilon RII/CD23 in vivo has not been evaluated. Aim: To determine whether CD23 plays a role in the inflammatory process in severe uncontrolled asthma and whether anti-IgE therapy modulates fc epsilon RII/CD23 expression in these patients. Methods: We evaluated the expression of IgE receptors fc epsilon RI, fc epsilon RII/CD23, and soluble CD23 (sCD23), and the activation state of peripheral blood monocytes (tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin (IL) 1-beta, transforming growth factor (TGF) beta expression) in the patients with severe asthma before and after 24 weeks of omalizumab treatment and in the healthy controls. Cytokine expression of monocytes in response to different stimulation (IL-4, IL-4 plus IgE, IL-4 plus IgE plus anti-IgE, and IL-4 plus IgE plus anti-IgE plus anti-CD23 for 72 hours) was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Results: Treatment with omalizumab (for 24 weeks) improved disease control and pulmonary function (forced expiratory volume in the first second of expiration, 64.5 versus 74%; p = 0.021). Mean ± SE expression of fc epsilon RI on monocytes was higher in the patients with asthma versus the controls (45.7 ± 12.2% versus 18.6 ± 5.8%; p = 0.04) and was reduced after omalizumab treatment (45.7 ± 12.2% versus 15.6 ± 4.4%; p = 0.027). Mean ± SE TGF-beta levels in supernatants from monocytes were reduced in the patients treated with omalizumab (211 ± 6 pg/mL versus 184 ± 9 pg/mL; p = 0.036). Conclusion: Modulation of the low affinity IgE receptor CD23 in severe asthma is complex, and sCD23 may inversely reflect disease activity. Treatment with omalizumab was associated with reduced monocyte activation.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)36-42
Number of pages7
JournalAllergy and Asthma Proceedings
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes

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Copyright © 2018, OceanSide Publications, Inc., U.S.A.


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