The Th1/Th2 paradigm has become an important issue in the pathogenesis of asthma, characterized by normal Th1 and elevated Th2 cytokine expression. Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) can produce a Th1 bias, whereas high-level dietary vitamin A can promote a Th2 bias. We used the OVA exposure mouse model to determine the contributions of vitamin A-deficient, control (4IU/g), and high-level vitamin A (250-IU/g) diets to the development of allergic airway inflammation and hyperresponsiveness. VAD reduced serum IgE and IgG1 responses, pulmonary eosinophilia, and the levels of IL-4 and IL-5 in bronchoalveolar lavage specimens, whereas the 250-IU/g diet increased serum IgE. Also, VAD blocked pulmonary hyperresponsiveness following methacholine challenge while the 250-IU/g diet exacerbated pulmonary hyperresponsiveness. In conclusion, VAD diminished and high-level dietary vitamin A enhanced the development of experimental asthma in this model system. These data suggest that excessive intake of vitamin A may increase the risk or severity of asthma in industrialized countries whereas vitamin A deficiency continues to increase mortality from infectious diseases in developing countries.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Feb 1 2008|
ASJC Scopus subject areas