Type-2 innate immune responses that occur in airways and are accompanied by goblet-cell hyperplasia and mucus production are largely driven by interleukin-33 (IL-33) and natural helper (NH) cells, a member of group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) and the major target of IL-33. Here we report that the corticosteroid resistance observed as a result of airway inflammation triggered by sensitization and exposure to allergen is induced via the IL-33/NH-cell axis. Thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) synthesized during airway inflammation plays a pivotal role in the induction of NH-cell corticosteroid resistance in vitro and in vivo, by controlling phosphorylation of STAT5 and expression of Bcl-xL in NH cells. Blockade of TSLP with a neutralizing antibody or blocking the TSLP/STAT5 signalling pathway with low molecular-weight STAT5 inhibitors such as pimozide restores corticosteroid sensitivity. Thus, the TSLP-STAT5 pathway could be a new therapeutic target in severe, corticosteroid-resistant asthma.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)