Date of Award

Summer 1992

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences



Committee Director

Robert E. Ratzlaff

Committee Member

Francis J. Liuzzi

Committee Member

Bruce Tedeschi

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.B46 M55


IgE-mediated inflammation was measured in mouse footpads with and without sciatic innervation. Mice were passively sensitized with IgE anti-dinitrophenol, a monoclonal antibody. Antigen-induced swelling was reduced by 26% by sciatic nerve transection. Whether transection occurred 10 days prior or immediately prior to antigen challenge did not affect the swelling response. The full inflammatory response was restored by antidromic stimulation of the distal portion of the cut nerve, but only in the freshly cut nerve. Antigen-induced swelling was unaffected by rhizotomy or spinal nerve transection. Pre-treatment with capsaicin reduced the swelling to a level similar to sciatic nerve transection. Treatment with a substance P antagonist reduced the inflammation more than denervation. While it is unclear why this antagonist reduced the swelling to this extent, data reveal that the antagonist does not interfere with histamine and serotonin induced swelling. These data provide in vivo evidence that an axonal reflex occurs in IgE-mediated inflammation at a level below the sensory neuronal cell bodies. Furthermore, depletion of the primary afferent C-fiber nerve terminals reduced the swelling to a level similar to sciatic nerve transect ion, indicating a role of the c-fibers in inflammation. The neurogenic component of IgE-mediated. The tachykinin, substance P, appears to play an integral role in the neurogenic component of IgE-mediated inflammation.


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