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Onco Targets Ther. 2013 May 31;6:609-13. doi: 10.2147/OTT.S44087. Print 2013.

Measurement of exhaled alveolar nitrogen oxide in patients with lung cancer: a friend from the past still precious today.

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Second Pulmonary Clinic, Sotiria Hospital, Athens, Greece;


Nitric oxide (NO) is a marker of airway inflammation and indirectly a general indicator of inflammation and oxidative stress. NO is a contributing factor in lung cancer at an early stage and also after chemotherapy treatment of lung cancer. We studied whether exhaled NO levels were altered by three cycles of chemotherapy at diagnosis and after chemotherapy, and whether, directly or indirectly, these changes were related to the course of disease. Also, a correlation of NO levels with other markers of inflammation was performed. We studied 42 patients diagnosed early: 26 men and 16 women with lung cancer. We analyzed blood tests for control of inflammatory markers, functional pulmonary tests, and alveolar exhaled NO. We recorded a decrease in exhaled NO after three cycles of chemotherapy in all patients, regardless of histological type and stage: there were 42 patients with mean 9.8 NO after three cycles (average 7.7). Also, a strong correlation appeared between NO measurements before and after chemotherapy and C-reactive protein (P < 0.05, r = 0.42, before) and (P < 0.045, r = 0.64, after). NO alveolar measurement as an indicator of airway inflammation indicates response to chemotherapy in lung cancer. Also, the inflammatory process in lung cancer was confirmed and indicated response to chemotherapy through an index that is sensitive to inflammatory disease of the airways.


inflammation; lung cancer; nitric oxide

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