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Proc Am Thorac Soc. 2012 Jul;9(3):126-9. doi: 10.1513/pats.201112-052AW.

Modulation of acute lung injury by integrins.

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  • 1University of California-San Francisco, CA 94143-2922, USA.


Acute lung injury is a common disorder with a high mortality rate, but previous efforts to develop drugs to treat this disorder have been unsuccessful. In an effort to develop more effective treatments, we have been studying the molecular pathways that regulate the dysfunction of alveolar epithelial cells and endothelial cells that serve as a final common pathway leading to alveolar flooding. Using integrin subunit knockout mice and antibodies we developed by immunizing these mice, we have found important and distinct roles for the αvβ6 integrin on epithelial cells and the αvβ5 integrin on endothelial cells in mediating increases in alveolar permeability in multiple models of acute lung injury. We have also found therapeutic effects of αvβ5 inhibition in two models of septic shock even when the antibody was administered to animals that were obviously ill. These results identify αvβ6 and αvβ5 as promising therapeutic targets for the treatment of acute lung injury and septic shock.

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