To compare the mediator releasability between atopic and nonatopic asthmatics, we measured basophil histamine releasability (BaHR) using a calcium-ionophore A23187 and anti-IgE in 137 subjects who were treated at Seoul National University Hospital. Subjects were categorized into atopic (group AA, n=77) or nonatopic asthmatics (group NA, n=32), or normal controls (group NC, n=28). Serum total IgE levels were determined and correlation with BaHR was assessed. Anti-IgE-induced maximal BaHR in groups AA, NA, and NC was 41.0+/-3.2, 23.1+/-4.5, and 16.8+/-3.8, respectively (mean+/-SE, %). Anti-IgE-induced BaHR in group AA was significantly higher than that in groups NA and NC (p<0.05). Calcium ionophore A23187-induced maximal BaHR was 43.1+/-2.8, 40.8+/-4.4, and 50.5+/-5.2, respectively (mean+/-SE, %), and there was no significant difference among the groups. Serum total IgE level correlated significantly with anti-IgE-induced maximal BaHR (r=0.281, p<0.01) but not with that induced by calcium ionophore A23187. In conclusion, IgE receptor-related BaHR is higher in atopic asthmatics than in nonatopic asthmatics, and this increased BaHR in atopics is significantly associated with increased serum total IgE level
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