PMID: 2631Mar 1, 1976

A mechanism for tobacco smoke-induced allergy

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
K F Keller, R J Doyle


Normal CFW mice, when exposed to tobacco smoke, showed a significantly increased susceptibility to the lethal effects of histamine. The LD50 for mice subjected to smoke was 45 mg/kg of histamine, whereas in normal CFW mice the LD50 was 1,100 mg/kg. The histamine susceptibility of smoked mice was markedly diminished by injecting the animals with isoproterenol. Normal CFW mice, as well as sham control mice, exhibited an epinephrine-induced hyperglycemia, whereas the blood glucose values for smoked mice given epinephrine were essentially the same as those for sham mice given only saline. This observation indicates that tobacco smoke may contain a component which causes an autonomic imbalance, hence rendering the mice more susceptible to histamine. This tobacco smoke-induced allergy is probably related to a blockade of adrenergic receptors and not to an immunologic phenomenon.


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