TRAIL mediated signaling in human mast cells: The influence of IgE-dependent activation

B. Berent-Maoz, S. Salemi, D. Mankuta, H. U. Simon, F. Levi-Schaffer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Background: Mast cells activation through FcεRI cross-linking has a pivotal role in the initiation of allergic reactions. The influence of this activation on programmed cell death of human mast cells has not yet been clarified. This study evaluates the influence of IgE-dependent activation alone and in synergy with TRAIL on the expression of molecules involved in the apoptotic signal transduction. Methods: Human cord blood derived mast cells (CBMC) were cultured with myeloma IgE followed by activation with anti-human IgE. The expression of proteins involved in apoptotic signal transduction was assessed by immunoblot analysis. To test the effect of activation on a pro-apoptotic stimulus, activated, IgE-treated and resting CBMC were incubated with TRAIL, or in a medium with suboptimal concentrations of stem cell factor (SCF). Results: In accordance with a previous study of ours, it was found that IgE-dependent activation increased TRAIL-induced caspase-8 and caspase-3 cleavage. However, it did not have a significant influence on CBMC death induced by SCF withdrawal. IgE-dependent activation increased the expression of FLIP and myeloid cell leukemia 1 (MCL-1) anti-apoptotic molecules as well as the pro-apoptotic one, BIM. In addition, a decrease in BID expression was observed. TRAIL could reverse the increase in FLIP but did not influence the upregulation of MCL-1 and of BIM. Conclusions: These findings suggest that IgE-dependent activation of human mast cells induces an increase in both pro-survival and pro-apoptotic molecules. We therefore hypothesized that IgE-dependent activation may regulate human mast cell apoptosis by fine-tuning anti-apoptotic and pro-apoptotic factors.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)333-340
Number of pages8
JournalAllergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2008


  • Allergy
  • Apoptosis
  • Cell activation
  • IgE
  • Mast cells


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