Immune Netw.  2008 Jun;8(2):59-65. 10.4110/in.2008.8.2.59.

Expression of Toll-like Receptors 2 and 4 and Immunoglobulins in Children wih Recurrent Otitis Media with Effusion

  • 1Department of Otolaryngology, College of Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Obstetric and Gynecology, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Suwon, Korea.
  • 3East-West Medical Research Institute, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea.


BACKGROUND: Toll-like receptors (TLRs) detect microbial infection and can directly induce innate host defense responses, which are thought to play critical roles in protecting the tubotympanum from infection. However, little is known about the relationship between TLRs, which are related to innate immunity, and immunoglobulins, which are related to adaptive immunity, in recurrent otitis media with effusion (OME). We therefore investigated the expression of TLR2 and TLR4 and immunoglobulin in children with OME. METHODS: The study population consisted of 72 children with OME, 31 with more than 4 episodes in 12 months or more than 3 episodes in 6 months (otitis-prone group), and 41 with fewer than 3 episodes in 12 months (non-otitis prone group). The expression in middle ear effusion of TLR2 and TLR4 mRNA, as determined by Real time- -polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), and the concentrations of IgG, IgA, and IgM, as determined by Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay(ELISA), were compared between the two groups. RESULTS: Expression of TLR2 and TLR4 mRNA was lower in the otitis prone than in the non-otitis prone group, but the difference was not statistically significant (p>0.05). Between group differences in the concentrations of IgG, IgA and IgM in effusion fluid were not significant (p>0.05), and there were no correlations between immunoglobulin concentration and the expression of TLR2 and TLR4. CONCLUSION: Although there was a trend toward lower expression of TLR2 and TLR4 in the otitis-prone group, the differences, and those in immunoglobulin concentration, did not differ significantly between the otitis-prone and non-prone groups.


otitis media; toll like receptor; immunoglobulin
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