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Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2003 Jan 15;167(2):193-8. Epub 2002 Oct 24.

In vivo and in vitro effects of SAR 943, a rapamycin analogue, on airway inflammation and remodeling.

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Novartis Respiratory Research Centre, Horsham, United Kingdom.


No current therapy is considered to be satisfactory for severe asthma, and alternative approaches are still required for what is a major unmet medical need. In this study, we compared the effect of a rapamycin derivative, SAR 943, with budesonide, using a murine model of lung inflammation and remodeling. Allergen challenge of ovalbumin-sensitized BALB/c mice induced an increase in the levels of interleukin-5 and interleukin-4; numbers of eosinophil, neutrophil, and lymphocyte; cellular fibronectin; lung epithelial cell proliferation and mucus hypersecretory phenotype; as well as hyperreactivity to methacholine. Both SAR 943 and budesonide, when given intranasally 1 hour before and 24 hours after the aerosol challenge, inhibited all of these parameters with a similar potency (effective dose 50% of 1 mg/kg). In primary cultured smooth muscle cells from human airways, SAR 943 dose dependently inhibited epidermal growth factor-induced proliferation but did not affect the basal cell proliferation. Neither the basal nor stimulated proliferation of a human bronchial epithelial cell line (16HBE14o-) was affected by SAR 943. In conclusion, SAR 943 is as effective as budesonide in inhibiting both lung inflammation and remodeling in a murine model of asthma. Hence, this class of compound could offer beneficial effects in patients with severe asthma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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