Research ArticleFibrosis

Eosinophil depletion suppresses radiation-induced small intestinal fibrosis

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Science Translational Medicine  21 Feb 2018:
Vol. 10, Issue 429, eaan0333
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aan0333

Eosinophils foster fibrosis

Cancer patients receiving abdominal radiation can develop radiation-induced intestinal fibrosis (RIF). Takemura et al. observed eosinophils in the small intestine of RIF patients and irradiated mice. Lymphocyte-deficient mice still developed RIF, but eosinophils were indispensible. They probed the mechanism of interaction between stromal cells, and recruited eosinophils, and showed depletion of eosinophils with two types of antibodies that ameliorated RIF. As anti-eosinophil antibodies are moving forward clinically for other diseases, they may easily be repurposed to prevent RIF in cancer patients.

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