β-(1,3)-Glucan is present in mould cell walls and frequently detected in house dust mite (HDM) faeces. β-Glucan exposure is thought to be associated with pulmonary allergic inflammation in mouse and man, although the published data are inconsistent. Here, we show that highly purified β-glucan exacerbates HDM-induced eosinophilic, T helper 2 type airway responses by acting as an adjuvant, promoting activation, proliferation and polarisation of HDM-specific T cells (1-Derβ T cells). We therefore provide definitive evidence that β-glucan can influence allergic pulmonary inflammation.
We also thank Animal Unit staff for care of the animals used in this study. Funding: The authors thank the Wellcome Trust (102705) and the Universities of Aberdeen and Cape Town for funding. DLW is partly supported by National Institutes of Health GM53522, GM083016 and C06RR0306551. KF and BNL are funded by the Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek, BNL is the recipient of an European Research Commission consolidator grant and participates in the European Union FP7 programs EUBIOPRED and MedALL. The funders had no role in study design, data collection.
- T helper 2
- house dust mite