Eosinophils are pleiotropic multifunctional leukocytes involved in initiation and propagation of diverse inflammatory responses, as well as modulators of innate and adaptive immunity. In this review, the biology of eosinophils is summarized, focusing on transcriptional regulation of eosinophil differentiation, characterization of the emerging properties of eosinophil granule proteins, surface proteins and pleiotropic mediators, and molecular mechanisms of eosinophil degranulation. New views on the role of eosinophils in homeostatic function are examined, including developmental biology and innate and adaptive immunity (as well as their interaction with mast cells and T cells) and their proposed role in disease processes including infections, asthma, and gastrointestinal disorders. Finally, strategies for targeted therapeutic intervention in eosinophil-mediated mucosal diseases are conceptualized.
Allergy and Allergic Diseases, Volume 1 p. 258-294