Isotonic smooth muscle response in human bronchi exposed in vitro to nitrogen dioxide.
Exposure to nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a common oxidant airborne pollutant, has been shown to cause reversible effects on lung function and airway responsiveness, in addition to airways inflammation. However, there have been conflicting reports concerning NO2-induced airway hyperresponsiveness. In the present study, we investigated the isotonic smooth muscle response in isolated human bronchi previously exposed in vitro to NO2. Bronchial segments were obtained from 12 patients who had undergone thoracotomy for lung cancer. Bronchial segments from each patient were exposed to air and to 2.5 parts per million (ppm) NO2 for 4 h. The contractile response of bronchial rings to acetylcholine, neurokinin A (NKA), and substance P was then studied under isotonic conditions. The response to NKA was also studied in rings, with or without epithelium, exposed either to air or 7 ppm NO2. No NO2-induced alteration of the bronchial smooth muscle isotonic response was found under any of the experimental conditions. We conclude that in vitro exposure to up to 7 ppm nitrogen dioxide does not cause alterations of the human bronchial smooth muscle shortening capacity.
Chitano, P; Lucchini, RE; Calabrò, F; Saetta, M; Maestrelli, P; Fabbri, LM; Mapp, CE
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