Superficial Mast Cells and the Asthmatic Response

  • Kevin Charles Flint
Part of the The Bloomsbury Series in Clinical Science book series (BLOOMSBURY)


There are few quantitative studies of the distribution of mast cells in human lung. Brinkman (1968) found mast cells within the bronchial mucosa but felt that these were rare in comparison with submucosal mast cells. In a systematic study of mast cells in the lungs of the monkey, Macaca fasicularis, Guerzon et al. (1979) confirmed that the majority of lung mast cells did indeed lie in the submucosa. However, they found significant numbers of mast cells lying within the mucosa between the epithelial cells; they calculated that 83% of mast cells were associated with conducting airways and an average of 12% of these were mucosal. Perhaps more significantly, not only did the total number of mast cells in the mucosa and the submucosa increase greatly towards the periphery but also the proportion of mucosal to submucosal cells increased from only 0.4% in the trachea to up to 27% in bronchioles.


Mast Cell Histamine Release Histamine Content Asthmatic Response Mucosal Mast Cell 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin Charles Flint
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ImmunologyThe Middlesex Hospital Medical SchoolLondonUK

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