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Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol. 2011 May;300(5):L691-700. doi: 10.1152/ajplung.00252.2010. Epub 2011 Feb 25.

A model of chronic inflammation and pulmonary emphysema after multiple ozone exposures in mice.

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Experimental Studies Unit, Airway Disease Section, National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London, UK.


Oxidative stress plays a role in the pathophysiology of emphysema through the activation of tissue proteases and apoptosis. We examined the effects of ozone exposure by exposing BALB/c mice to either a single 3-h exposure or multiple exposures over 3 or 6 wk, with two 3-h exposures per week. Compared with air-exposed mice, the increase in neutrophils in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and lung inflammation index was greatest in mice exposed for 3 and 6 wk. Lung volumes were increased in 3- and 6-wk-exposed mice but not in single-exposed. Alveolar space and mean linear intercept were increased in 6- but not 3-wk-exposed mice. Caspase-3 and apoptosis protease activating factor-1 immunoreactivity was increased in the airway and alveolar epithelium and macrophages of 3- and 6-wk-exposed mice. Interleukin-13, keratinocyte chemoattractant, caspase-3, and IFN-γ mRNA were increased in the 6-wk-exposed group, but heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) mRNA decreased. matrix metalloproteinase-12 (MMP-12) and caspase-3 protein expression increased in lungs of 6-wk-exposed mice. Collagen area increased and epithelial area decreased in airway wall at 3- and 6-wk exposure. Exposure of mice to ozone for 6 wk induced a chronic inflammatory process, with alveolar enlargement and damage linked to epithelial apoptosis and increased protease expression.

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