Neutrophil activation during attacks in patients with hereditary angioedema due to C1-inhibitor deficiency

Nóra Veszeli, Dorottya Csuka, Zsuzsanna Zotter, Éva Imreh, Mihály Józsi, Szabolcs Benedek, Lilian Varga, Henriette Farkas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Earlier studies have shown that the absolute number of neutrophil granulocytes (NGs) may increase during attack of hereditary angioedema due to C1-inhibitor deficiency (C1-INH-HAE). Whether NGs undergo activation during attack has not yet been investigated. However, as neutrophil elastase (NE) can cleave and inactivate C1-INH which may contribute to the dysregulation of the kallikrein-kinin system and hence, to edema formation. Our aim was to investigate the possible activation of NGs during attacks. Methods: We studied blood samples obtained from 26 patients with C1-INH-HAE during symptom-free periods and during attacks, along with samples from 26 healthy volunteers. NG count (NGC), NE, myeloperoxidase (MPO), pentraxin 3 (PTX3), CRP, C5a, factor H, IL-8, and TNF-α levels were measured. Results: NGC was higher during attacks than during symptom-free periods (p = 0.0132), and the same was observed for NE (p = 0.0026), MPO (p = 0.0008), and PTX3 levels (p = 0.0409). There was a strong positive correlation between NE and MPO levels during attacks (p < 0.0001, R = 0.709). Furthermore, IL-8 (p = 0.0061) and TNF-α (p = 0.0186) levels were also elevated during attacks, compared with symptom-free periods. By contrast, C5a and factor H levels were similar in samples obtained during attacks or in symptom-free periods. Conclusion: Increased NGC was associated with elevated NE and MPO levels - this suggests neutrophil activation during attacks. The strong positive correlation between NE and MPO levels, together with the elevated PTX3 concentration, may indicate the expression of neutrophil extracellular traps. All these processes may contribute to the activation of kallikrein-kinin system, which leads to the onset of an edematous episode.

Original languageEnglish
Article number374
JournalOrphanet journal of rare diseases
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 10 2015


  • C1-inhibitor deficiency
  • Edematous attack
  • Hereditary angioedema
  • IL-8
  • Myeloperoxidase
  • Neutrophil activation
  • Neutrophil elastase
  • Neutrophil granulocytes
  • TNF-α

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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