Effects of oral steroids on immunoglobulins in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid in active sarcoidosis

M. Spatafora, A. Mirabella, G. A. Rossi, A. Bonanno, L. Riccobono, A. Merendino, V. Bellia, G. Bonsignore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Immunoglobulin (Ig) levels increase in the lower respiratory tract of patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis. We evaluated the effects of prednisone therapy upon Ig concentrations in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid of ten patients with active disease (> 30% T-lymphocytes in BAL and positive 67Gallium (67Ga) lung scan). Therapy significantly lowered T-lymphocyte percentages in BAL and 67Ga lung scan indices and was followed by a slight improvement of the studied functional parameters. Biochemical analysis of BAL showed a significant decrease of both IgG/albumin (baseline 1.24 ± 0.21; after therapy 0.40 ± 0.12) and IgA/albumin (baseline 0.55 ± 0.07; after therapy 0.14 ± 0.03) ratios in all patients. Conversely, comparisons of IgM/albumin ratios did not show any change over the study period (baseline 0.05 ± 0.01; after therapy 0.06 ± 0.03). Thus oral steroid treatment suppresses the alveolitis of pulmonary sarcoidosis, as shown not only by the reduction of lung T-cells and 67Ga lung uptake, but also by the decreased Ig levels in the alveolar spaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)505-509
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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