Smoking influences the immunological architecture of the human larynx

Louisa E N Rees, Philip H. Jones, Omar Ayoub, Sinnappa Gunasekaran, Krishnan Rajkumar, Christopher R. Stokes, Karin Haverson, Mick Bailey, Martin A. Birchall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Little is known about the effects of demographic and lifestyle factors on laryngeal mucosal immunology. Pinch biopsies of laryngeal mucosa were studied from 63 patients without laryngeal disease. Areas of positive staining for HLA-DR, HLA-DQ, HLA-DP, CD45, CD45RA, CD45RO, CD4, CD8, and CD79 were calculated. Patients were stratified according to gender and smoking status. Analysis of covariance showed current cigarette smokers had increased numbers of CD4+ T cells and there was an association between older age and greater CD4+ T cell numbers in both epithelium and lamina propria. Older age and female gender were associated with decreased lamina propria CD4+ CD45RO+ T cells and an increase in CD4+ CD45RO- T cells. T cell populations in the larynx may therefore be influenced by smoking, age and gender. We hypothesize that smoking induces changes in normal immunological function of the larynx, which may contribute to the etiology of inflammatory disease and cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)342-347
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Immunology
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Feb 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Mucosal immunity
  • Risk factors
  • Smoking
  • T cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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