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Table 1 Immunological changes occurring in older individuals compared to younger ages

From: Choosing wisely: practical considerations on treatment efficacy and safety of asthma in the elderly

Reduced number and function of hematopoietic stem cells
Thymic involution
Reduced circulating naive T cells
Increased frequencies of well-differentiated memory CD28− T cells with limited proliferative potential
Increased levels of many proinflammatory cytokines, including interleukin (IL)-6 and TNFα
Decreased CD4/CD8 ratios
Senescence of epithelial cells of the lung
Augmented neutrophils in the airway
Reduced function of eosinophils
Decline in the amount of macrophages and cytotoxic natural killer cells
Reduced capacity to stimulate antigen specific T cells of dendritic cells,
Reduced oxidative burst, phagocytic capacity and bactericidal activity of neutophils
Reduced oxidative burst and phagocytic capacity of macrophages