43 research outputs found

    Basement membrane and vascular remodelling in smokers and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a cross-sectional study

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Little is known about airway remodelling in bronchial biopsies (BB) in smokers and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We conducted an initial pilot study comparing BB from COPD patients with nonsmoking controls. This pilot study suggested the presence of reticular basement membrane (Rbm) fragmentation and altered vessel distribution in COPD.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>To determine whether Rbm fragmentation and altered vessel distribution in BB were specific for COPD we designed a cross-sectional study and stained BB from 19 current smokers and 14 ex-smokers with mild to moderate COPD and compared these to 15 current smokers with normal lung function and 17 healthy and nonsmoking subjects.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Thickness of the Rbm was not significantly different between groups; although in COPD this parameter was quite variable. The Rbm showed fragmentation and splitting in both current smoking groups and ex-smoker COPD compared with healthy nonsmokers (p < 0.02); smoking and COPD seemed to have additive effects. Rbm fragmentation correlated with smoking history in COPD but not with age. There were more vessels in the Rbm and fewer vessels in the lamina propria in current smokers compared to healthy nonsmokers (p < 0.05). The number of vessels staining for vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in the Rbm was higher in both current smoker groups and ex-smoker COPD compared to healthy nonsmokers (p < 0.004). In current smoker COPD VEGF vessel staining correlated with FEV1% predicted (r = 0.61, p < 0.02).</p> <p>Conclusions</p> <p>Airway remodelling in smokers and mild to moderate COPD is associated with fragmentation of the Rbm and altered distribution of vessels in the airway wall. Rbm fragmentation was also present to as great an extent in ex-smokers with COPD. These characteristics may have potential physiological consequences.</p

    Inflammatory Transcriptome Profiling of Human Monocytes Exposed Acutely to Cigarette Smoke

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    <div><h3>Background</h3><p>Cigarette smoking is responsible for 5 million deaths worldwide each year, and is a major risk factor for cardiovascular and lung diseases. Cigarette smoke contains a complex mixture of over 4000 chemicals containing 10<sup>15</sup> free radicals. Studies show smoke is perceived by cells as an inflammatory and xenobiotic stimulus, which activates an immune response. The specific cellular mechanisms driving cigarette smoke-induced inflammation and disease are not fully understood, although the innate immune system is involved in the pathology of smoking related diseases.</p> <h3>Methodology/Principle findings</h3><p>To address the impact of smoke as an inflammagen on the innate immune system, THP-1 cells and Human PBMCs were stimulated with 3 and 10% (v/v) cigarette smoke extract (CSE) for 8 and 24 hours. Total RNA was extracted and the transcriptome analysed using Illumina BeadChip arrays. In THP-1 cells, 10% CSE resulted in 80 genes being upregulated and 37 downregulated by ≥1.5 fold after 8 hours. In PBMCs stimulated with 10% CSE for 8 hours, 199 genes were upregulated and 206 genes downregulated by ≥1.5 fold. After 24 hours, the number of genes activated and repressed by ≥1.5 fold had risen to 311 and 306 respectively. The major pathways that were altered are associated with cell survival, such as inducible antioxidants, protein chaperone and folding proteins, and the ubiquitin/proteosome pathway.</p> <h3>Conclusions</h3><p>Our results suggest that cigarette smoke causes inflammation and has detrimental effects on the metabolism and function of innate immune cells. In addition, THP-1 cells provide a genetically stable alternative to primary cells for the study of the effects of cigarette smoke on human monocytes.</p> </div

    The effector T cell response to influenza infection

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    Influenza virus infection induces a potent initial innate immune response, which serves to limit the extent of viral replication and virus spread. However, efficient (and eventual) viral clearance within the respiratory tract requires the subsequent activation, rapid proliferation, recruitment, and expression of effector activities by the adaptive immune system, consisting of antibody producing B cells and influenza-specific T lymphocytes with diverse functions. The ensuing effector activities of these T lymphocytes ultimately determine (along with antibodies) the capacity of the host to eliminate the viruses and the extent of tissue damage. In this review, we describe this effector T cell response to influenza virus infection. Based on information largely obtained in experimental settings (i.e., murine models), we will illustrate the factors regulating the induction of adaptive immune T cell responses to influenza, the effector activities displayed by these activated T cells, the mechanisms underlying the expression of these effector mechanisms, and the control of the activation/differentiation of these T cells, in situ, in the infected lungs

    The Cell Adhesion Molecule “CAR” and Sialic Acid on Human Erythrocytes Influence Adenovirus In Vivo Biodistribution

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    Although it has been known for 50 years that adenoviruses (Ads) interact with erythrocytes ex vivo, the molecular and structural basis for this interaction, which has been serendipitously exploited for diagnostic tests, is unknown. In this study, we characterized the interaction between erythrocytes and unrelated Ad serotypes, human 5 (HAd5) and 37 (HAd37), and canine 2 (CAV-2). While these serotypes agglutinate human erythrocytes, they use different receptors, have different tropisms and/or infect different species. Using molecular, biochemical, structural and transgenic animal-based analyses, we found that the primary erythrocyte interaction domain for HAd37 is its sialic acid binding site, while CAV-2 binding depends on at least three factors: electrostatic interactions, sialic acid binding and, unexpectedly, binding to the coxsackievirus and adenovirus receptor (CAR) on human erythrocytes. We show that the presence of CAR on erythrocytes leads to prolonged in vivo blood half-life and significantly reduced liver infection when a CAR-tropic Ad is injected intravenously. This study provides i) a molecular and structural rationale for Ad–erythrocyte interactions, ii) a basis to improve vector-mediated gene transfer and iii) a mechanism that may explain the biodistribution and pathogenic inconsistencies found between human and animal models

    Postsynaptic nigrostriatal dopamine receptors and their role in movement regulation

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    The article presents the hypothesis that nigrostriatal dopamine may regulate movement by modulation of tone and contraction in skeletal muscles through a concentration-dependent influence on the postsynaptic D1 and D2 receptors on the follow manner: nigrostriatal axons innervate both receptor types within the striatal locus somatotopically responsible for motor control in agonist/antagonist muscle pair around a given joint. D1 receptors interact with lower and D2 receptors with higher dopamine concentrations. Synaptic dopamine concentration increases immediately before movement starts. We hypothesize that increasing dopamine concentrations stimulate first the D1 receptors and reduce muscle tone in the antagonist muscle and than stimulate D2 receptors and induce contraction in the agonist muscle. The preceded muscle tone reduction in the antagonist muscle eases the efficient contraction of the agonist. Our hypothesis is applicable for an explanation of physiological movement regulation, different forms of movement pathology and therapeutic drug effects. Further, this hypothesis provides a theoretical basis for experimental investigation of dopaminergic motor control and development of new strategies for treatment of movement disorders