Excessive neutrophil elastase in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid in subclinical emphysema

A. Yoshioka, Tomoko Betsuyaku, M. Nishimura, K. Miyamoto, T. Kondo, Y. Kawakami

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Abstract

In an attempt to further evaluate the role of neutrophil elastase (NE) in the development of emphysema, we examined the immunologic quantity of NE bound to α1-protease inhibitor (PI), the NE inhibitory activity, and the molecular pattern of α1-PI in unconcentrated bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) supernatant from 36 community-based older volunteers. They were classified into three groups: 10 current smokers with low attenuation areas (LAAs) on the lung computed tomography (CT) scans who were considered to have subclinical emphysema, 13 current smokers who had a comparable smoking history but no LAA, and 13 noncurrent smokers without LAA. The concentration of NE-α1-PI complex was significantly increased in the subjects with subclinical emphysema when compared not only with the noncurrent smokers (0.52 ± 0.10 versus 0.21 ± 0.03 SEM μg/mg albumin, p < 0.01) but also with the LAA(-) current smokers (0.52 ± 0.10 versus 0.23 ± 0.07 SEM μg/mg albumin, p < 0.01). NE inhibitory activity measured by a spectrophotometric method using methoxysuccinyl-alanyl-alanyl-prolyl-valyl-paranitroanilide did not show any significant difference between the two groups of current smokers. There was no difference in the pattern or density of native and proteolysed α1-PI bands between the three groups by Western blotting. We conclude that NE-α1-PI complex in BALF is a factor that may differentiate smokers who are potentially developing emphysema from those who are not.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2127-2132
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Volume152
Issue number6 I
Publication statusPublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

Cite this

Yoshioka, A., Betsuyaku, T., Nishimura, M., Miyamoto, K., Kondo, T., & Kawakami, Y. (1995). Excessive neutrophil elastase in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid in subclinical emphysema. American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 152(6 I), 2127-2132.