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Respirology. 2010 Oct;15(7):1131-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1843.2010.01829.x.

High MW hyaluronan inhibits smoke inhalation-induced lung injury and improves survival.

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1
Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02114, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE:

High MW hyaluronan (HMW HA) as opposed to low MW hyaluronan (LMW HA) has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic effects. We hypothesized that treatment with HMW HA would block smoke inhalation lung injury by inhibiting smoke-induced lung inflammation and airway epithelial cell apoptosis.

METHODS:

Anesthetized, intubated male rats were randomly allocated to either control or smoke inhalation injury groups. Rats were treated with 3-mL subcutaneous normal saline solution (sham) or LMW HA (35 kDa) or HMW HA (1600 kDa) 18 h before exposure to 15 min of cotton smoke (n = 5 each). Rats were also treated post smoke inhalation with 1600 kDa HA by intra-peritoneal injection (3 mL) or intra-tracheal nebulization (200 µL). Lung neutrophil infiltration, airway apoptosis, airway mucous plugging and lung injury were assessed 4 h after smoke inhalation injury.

RESULTS:

Rats pretreated with 1600 kDa HA had significantly less smoke-induced neutrophil infiltration, lung oedema, airway apoptosis and mucous plugging. Pretreatment with 35 kDa HA, in contrast, increased smoke-induced neutrophil infiltration and lung injury score. Intra-tracheal administration of a single dose 1600 kDa HA, but not intra-peritoneal injection, significantly improved survival post smoke inhalation.

CONCLUSIONS:

High MW hyaluronan (1600 kDa) may prove to be a beneficial therapy for smoke inhalation through inhibition of smoke-induced inflammation, lung oedema, airway epithelial cell apoptosis and airway mucous plugging.

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