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Repeated intranasal instillation with staphylococcal enterotoxin B induces nasal allergic inflammation in guinea pigs

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Staphylococcal enterotoxins (SEs) appear to play a role in the pathogenesis of allergic disease. However, no animal models have been reported to show nasal allergic inflammation by repeated inhalation with staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB) in the absence of adjuvant. This study was designed to determine whether intranasal instillation of guinea pigs with SEB results in nasal allergic inflammation.


Guinea pigs were intranasally instilled with 40 μL of 4-μg SEB once every 4 days 11 times. For the control group, guinea pigs were prepared with saline instead of SEB. Sneezing and nasal scratching frequency were evaluated after each intranasal instillation. The production of antigen-specific antibodies including IgE, nasal eosinophilia, and cytokines in the nasal cavity lavage fluid (NCLF) were measured after the 11th intranasal immunization.


In the model group, symptoms of sneezing and nasal scratching were induced at the 8th to 11th challenges. Intranasal immunization with SEB elicited a local nasal mucosa inflammatory response characterized by apparent eosinophil infiltration. In the NCLF, the expression of IL-4 but not interferon-gamma was increased after challenges. The serum levels of total and SEB-specific IgE and IgG1 were higher in model groups in comparison with the control groups (p < 0.01).


These results indicate that repeated intranasal instillation with SEB leads to Th2 immune response, allergic nasal inflammation, and increased antigen-specific IgE production that are characteristic of allergic rhinitis (AR). The model in this study could be valuable in analyzing the pathogenesis of AR infected with Staphylococcus aureus.
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Keywords: Allergic rhinitis; IFN-gamma; IL-4; IgE; IgG1; Staphylococcus aureus; animal model; eosinophilia; guinea pig; staphylococcal enterotoxin B

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, the First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China

Publication date: 2011-05-01

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