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Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 2001 May;24(5):545-55.

Attenuation of lung inflammation and fibrosis in interferon-gamma-deficient mice after intratracheal bleomycin.

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Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.


Because mouse strains susceptible to bleomycin, such as C57BL/ 6J, tend to produce T helper type 1 (Th1) cytokines in response to immune activation, we hypothesized that the inflammatory response to bleomycin is mediated, in part, by local production of the Th1 cytokine interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma). Consistent with this hypothesis, fibrosis-prone C57BL/6J and A/J mice demonstrated significantly elevated expression of IFN-gamma protein (by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid at 24 h, and subsequently increased lung inflammation, weight loss, and mortality 10 d after intratracheal bleomycin administration compared with fibrosis-resistant BALB/c mice or saline control mice. To directly determine a role for IFN-gamma in bleomycin toxicity, we exposed C57BL/6J mice with a homozygous null mutation of the IFN-gamma gene (IFN-gamma[-/-]) and wild-type C57BL/6J mice to intratracheal bleomycin. IFN-gamma(-/-) mice demonstrated significantly lower parenchymal inflammation, weight loss, and mortality 10 d after 5 U/kg intratracheal bleomycin administration compared with control mice. At 3 wk after 1.5 U/kg bleomycin exposure, single lung collagen determined by hydroxyproline assay was significantly lower in IFN-gamma(-/-) mice compared with wild-type C57BL/6J mice. Together, these results suggest that IFN-gamma mediates, in part, bleomycin-induced pulmonary inflammation and fibrosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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