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Electrophoresis. 2001 May;22(9):1795-800.

Identification of a new potential airway irritation marker, palate lung nasal epithelial clone protein, in human nasal lavage fluid with two-dimensional electrophoresis and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight.

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Department of Health and Environment, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Sweden.


We have analyzed protein patterns of human nasal lavage fluid (NLF) with two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) and identified several proteins (such as transthyretin, Clara Cell protein 16, lipocalin-1, cystatin S, cystatin SN, immunoglobulin binding factor, statherin, calgranulin B, prolactin-inducible protein, and zinc-alpha2-glycoprotein) by N-terminal amino acid sequencing and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionizationtime of flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry. To investigate whether airway irritation causes alterations in NLF 2-DE patterns, we compared epoxy workers with airway irritation (n=8) and healthy controls (n=6) before and after 2 h exposure to the epoxy chemical, dimethylbenzylamine (DMBA, 100 microg/m3) in an exposure chamber. A 25 kDa protein with pI 5.5 was found to be altered in the NLF 2-DE patterns; a trypsin digest of the 2-DE spot analyzed by MALDI-TOF and expressed sequence tags (ESTs) determined after post-source decay (PSD) identified the protein as palate lung and nasal epithelial clone (PLUNC). In controls, the levels of NLF-PLUNC were generally lower after 2 h exposure, whereas in epoxy workers, the levels were increased three- to twentyfold after exposure. The human gene sequence for PLUNC was just recently reported and so far no biofunctional data are available. Our results suggest that PLUNC is involved in the airway inflammatory response after exposure to irritants.

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