IL-13–associated epithelial remodeling correlates with clinical severity in nasal polyposis

Maya E. Kotas, Neil N. Patel, Emily K. Cope, Jose G. Gurrola, Andrew N. Goldberg, Steven D. Pletcher, Max A. Seibold, Camille M. Moore, Erin D. Gordon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background: Epithelial remodeling is a histopathologic feature of chronic inflammatory airway diseases including chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS). Cell-type shifts and their relationship to CRS endotypes and severity are incompletely described. Objective: We sought to understand the relationship of epithelial cell remodeling to inflammatory endotypes and disease outcomes in CRS. Methods: Using cell-type transcriptional signatures derived from epithelial single-cell sequencing, we analyzed bulk RNA-sequencing data from sinus epithelial brushings obtained from patients with CRS with and without nasal polyps in comparison to healthy controls. Results: The airway epithelium in nasal polyposis displayed increased tuft cell transcripts and decreased ciliated cell transcripts along with an IL-13 activation signature. In contrast, CRS without polyps showed an IL-17 activation signature. IL-13 activation scores were associated with increased tuft cell, goblet cell, and mast cell scores and decreased ciliated cell scores. Furthermore, the IL-13 score was strongly associated with a previously reported activated (“polyp”) tuft cell score and a prostaglandin E2 activation signature. The Lund-Mackay score, a computed tomographic metric of sinus opacification, correlated positively with activated tuft cell, mast cell, prostaglandin E2, and IL-13 signatures and negatively with ciliated cell transcriptional signatures. Conclusions: These results demonstrate that cell-type alterations and prostaglandin E2 stimulation are key components of IL-13–induced epithelial remodeling in nasal polyposis, whereas IL-17 signaling is more prominent in CRS without polyps, and that clinical severity correlates with the degree of IL-13–driven epithelial remodeling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1277-1285
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2023


  • Chronic rhinosinusitis
  • IL-13
  • endotype
  • epithelial remodeling
  • nasal polyposis
  • prostaglandin E2
  • type 2 inflammation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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