Eosinophils accumulate in high numbers in the lungs of asthmatic patients. These cells have the ability to induce tissue damage, a capacity that relates to their traditional role in host defense against parasitic worms. On the other hand, eosinophils produce growth factors associated with tissue repair and remodeling, notably TGF-β1. The relationship of these activities to lung dysfunction in asthma is highly controversial, but recent observations in humans and in animal models add spice to the debate .
Timothy J. Williams