Korean J Otolaryngol-Head Neck Surg.  1999 Mar;42(3):343-347.

Effects of Oral Corticosteroids on the Lymphocyte Subsets in Nasal Polyps

  • 1Department of Otolaryngology, School of Medicine, Catholic University of Taegu-Hyosung, Taegu, Korea. hsseung@cuth.cataegu.ac.kr
  • 2Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Catholic University of Taegu-Hyosung, Taegu, Korea.


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The etiology and pathogenesis of nasal polyps are still not fully understood. In nasal polyps, infiltration of lymphocytes is one of the characteristic findings. The purpose of this study was to determine the lymphoid cell populations in various nasal polyps and the effect of corticosteroid on the lymphocytes of nasal polyps.
We carried out immunohistochemical staining for CD3, CD4, CD8, CD20, and HLA-DR monoclonal antibodies using five allergic polyps, five non-allergic polyps, five antrochoanal polyps and five steroid treated non-allergic polyps, and four normal inferior turbinates tissues. The number of positive cells in three subepithelial and three periglandular areas were counted by light microscopy at x 400 magnification in each section.
There were no significant difference among lymphocyte subsets at different levels of nasal polyp. The proportion of CD8+ was significantly higher than that of CD4+ cells in the tissues of every nasal polyp, and CD20+ cells were rare. Corticosteroid significantly influenced the proportion of CD4+ cells. There was no difference among lymphocyte subsets between allergic and non-allergic polyps. The incidence of HLA-DR+ cells were much lower in antrochoanal polyps and inferior turbinates than in nasal polyps.
The proportion of low CD4+cells, high CD8+ cells, and high HLA-DR+ cells in nasal polyp may be responsible for chronic inflammation, which would be important for the formation of nasal polyps. The difference of lymphocyte subsets and low HLA-DR+ cells may reflect the different pathogenesis of antrochoanal polyp from other nasal polyps.


Nasal polyp; Lymphocyte; Immunohistochemical study
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