OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS - Characterization of the localized adaptive immune response in the airway scar of patients with idiopathic subglottic stenosis (iSGS).
STUDY DESIGN - Basic Science.
METHODS - Utilizing 36 patients with subglottic stenosis (25 idiopathic subglottic stenosis [iSGS], 10 iatrogenic post-intubation stenosis [iLTS], and one granulomatosis with polyangiitis [GPA]) we applied immunohistochemical and immunologic techniques coupled with RNA sequencing.
RESULTS - iSGS, iLTS, and GPA demonstrate a significant immune infiltrate in the subglottic scar consisting of adaptive cell subsets (T cells along with dendritic cells). Interrogation of T cell subtypes showed significantly more CD69 CD103 CD8 tissue resident memory T cells (T ) in the iSGS airway scar than iLTS specimens (iSGS vs. iLTS; 50% vs. 28%, P = .0065). Additionally, subglottic CD8 clones possessed T-cell receptor (TCR) sequences with known antigen specificity for viral and intracellular pathogens.
CONCLUSIONS - The human subglottis is significantly enriched for CD8 tissue resident memory T cells in iSGS, which possess TCR sequences proven to recognize viral and intracellular pathogens. These results inform our understanding of iSGS, provide a direction for future discovery, and demonstrate immunologic function in the human proximal airway. Laryngoscope, 2020.
© 2020 The American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society, Inc.