Jpn. J. Pharmacol. 83 (3), 241-245 (2000)

In Vitro Effects of Ginkgolide B on Lymphocyte Activation in Atopic Asthma: Comparison With Cyclosporin A

Fadia Mahmoud1, Habib Abul2, Babatunde Onadeko3, Mousa Khadadah3, Donald Haines4 and Gareth Morgan5

1Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences and Nursing, Kuwait University,
Sulaibekhat, P.O. Box 31470, Kuwait 90805
2Department of Pharmacology, 3Department of Medicine and 5Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Kuwait University,
Safat, P.O. Box 24923, Kuwait 13110
4Department of Pathology, University of Connecticut School of Medicine,
363 Farmington Avenue, Farmington, Connecticut 06030-3105, USA

Abstract: The effects of Ginkgolide B (BN52021) on in vitro activation responses of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from asthmatic patients was measured using 2-channel flow cytometric analysis of activation-associated cell surface antigens or ELISA assays for cytokines known to be expressed by PBMC during T1 or T2 immunological activation. BN52021 is an anti-inflammatory extract of Ginkgo biloba and has been used therapeutically. It is a known inhibititor of platelet activating factor (PAF), which is important in the pathogenesis of asthma, and may synergise with cyclosporin A (CyA) to inhibit pathogenic immune activation in asthmatics. We compared the inhibitory effects of BN52021 and CyA (1 mM each) on activation of PBMC of asthmatic patients stimulated by phorbol myristate acetate and calcium ionophore. Inhibition of production of the cytokines IL-4 and IL-5 by BN52021 was insignificant compared to CyA. However, BN52021 significantly reversed the increase in activation-associated CD45RA expression, with a trend towards decreased expression of HLA-DR. Lymphocyte activation markers were not significantly altered by CyA. Since they appear to have differing effects on activated cells, the anti-inflammatory effects of CyA and BN52021 in atopic asthma is potentially additive. The present approach may be useful for preliminary evaluation of novel therapeutic modalities for asthma treatment.

Keywords: Asthma, Gingkolide, Lymphocyte activation, Interleukins 4 and 5, Immunosuppression

Copyright© The Japanese Pharmacological Society 2000

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