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Abstract

Interleukin-5 (IL-5) is the major soluble factor able to mediate hypereosinophilia. We report a case of hypereosinophilic syndrome in which the presence of a population of CD3-CD4+ cells able to overproduce IL-5 was shown. The lack of CD3 and TCRAB membrane expression on otherwise phenotypically normal mature T lymphocytes together with the absence of detectable TCRBV mRNA and clonal rearrangement of TCRB gene suggested that the abnormal lymphocyte population was the expression of a peripheral T-cell lymphoma with an indolent clinical course. Peripheral blood lymphocytes enriched in this population were able to secrete high levels of IL-5 but not IL-4, and no IL-2 or interferon-gamma, when stimulated in vitro with phytohemagglutinin and phorbol myristate acetate. The serum contained eosinophil survival factors whose activity was partially neutralized by a specific antihuman IL-5 antibody. This observation further emphasized the relationship between hypereosinophilic syndrome. IL-5, and T-cell lymphoproliferative disorders.