BACKGROUND AND AIMS:
Allergic rhinitis is characterized by eosinophil infiltration and accumulation in the nasal mucosa mainly due to IL-3, IL-5, and eotaxin activities. We undertook this study to investigate a possible in vivo effect of carbon dioxide-enriched water inhalation in patients with allergic rhinitis.
Twenty five consecutive patients inhaled carbon dioxide-enriched water at Fonti di Rabbi Spa Centre (Trento, Italy). Symptom scores for nasal obstruction, itching and sneezing were obtained before and after treatment. Nasal lavage was collected, and IL-3, IL-5, and eotaxin levels were assessed using the quantitative sandwich enzyme immunoassay technique. Cytometric analysis was performed on samples to measure total cell count, CD45+ cells, and percentages of polymorphonucleates and lymphocytes.
There were statistically significant differences in chemokine levels and in cell populations between patients and healthy controls before treatment. After carbon dioxide-enriched water inhalation, we observed statistically significant improvements in symptom scores, chemokine levels, and percentages of cell populations.
Our results seem to confirm the role of IL-3, IL-5, and eotaxin in the pathophysiology of allergy and the beneficial effect of carbon dioxide-enriched water inhalation in patients affected by allergic rhinitis.