Expression of the costimulatory molecule B7-H2 (inducible costimulator ligand) by human airway epithelial cells

Shin Kurosawa, Allen C. Myers, Lieping Chen, Shengdian Wang, Jian Ni, James R. Plitt, Nicola M. Heller, Bruce S. Bochner, Robert P. Schleimer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Tissue structural cells are known in some situations to play a role in the presentation of antigen and in immunoregulation. We assessed the expression of B7 homologs, known to be involved in antigen presentation and lymphocyte costimulation, in human airway epithelial cells. Flow cytometry performed on the airway epithelial cell line BEAS-2B, as well as primary bronchial epithelial cells (PBEC), showed that B7-H2 was constitutively expressed on both BEAS-2B and PBEC, whereas B7-1 and B7-2 were undetectable on either epithelial cell type. B7-H2 expression was confirmed by Western blot using a specific antibody. Stimulation with various cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor-α, interferon-γ, and interleukin-4, slightly downregulated B7-H2 expression detected by flow cytometry, but did not significantly alter the apparent level of protein as assessed by Western blotting. Northern blotting detected mRNA for B7-H2 and B7-1, but not B7-2. B7-H2 was cloned from BEAS-2B cells and the sequence verified. Expression of B7-H2 mRNA was detected by real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction in PBEC from three independent donors. Immunohistochemical analysis of airway derived from autopsies revealed expression of B7-H2 in human airway epithelial cells. These results demonstrate that airway epithelial cells express the costimulatory molecule B7-H2, and suggest the possibility that B7-H2 may participate in antigen presentation by epithelial cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)563-573
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of respiratory cell and molecular biology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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