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Antioxid Redox Signal. 2014 Nov 20;21(15):2149-74. doi: 10.1089/ars.2013.5469. Epub 2014 Jul 1.

Lung injury and lung cancer caused by cigarette smoke-induced oxidative stress: Molecular mechanisms and therapeutic opportunities involving the ceramide-generating machinery and epidermal growth factor receptor.

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1
Center for Comparative Respiratory Biology and Medicine, Genome and Biomedical Sciences Facility, University of California School of Medicine , Davis, California.

Abstract

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and lung cancer are frequently caused by tobacco smoking. However, these diseases present opposite phenotypes involving redox signaling at the cellular level. While COPD is characterized by excessive airway epithelial cell death and lung injury, lung cancer is caused by uncontrolled epithelial cell proliferation. Notably, epidemiological studies have demonstrated that lung cancer incidence is significantly higher in patients who have preexisting emphysema/lung injury. However, the molecular link and common cell signaling events underlying lung injury diseases and lung cancer are poorly understood. This review focuses on studies of molecular mechanism(s) underlying smoking-related lung injury (COPD) and lung cancer. Specifically, the role of the ceramide-generating machinery during cigarette smoke-induced oxidative stress leading to both apoptosis and proliferation of lung epithelial cells is emphasized. Over recent years, it has been established that ceramide is a sphingolipid playing a major role in lung epithelia structure/function leading to lung injury in chronic pulmonary diseases. However, new and unexpected findings draw attention to its potential role in lung development, cell proliferation, and tumorigenesis. To address this dichotomy in detail, evidence is presented regarding several protein targets, including Src, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase, and neutral sphingomyelinase 2, the major sphingomyelinase that controls ceramide generation during oxidative stress. Furthermore, their roles are presented not only in apoptosis and lung injury but also in enhancing cell proliferation, lung cancer development, and resistance to epidermal growth factor receptor-targeted therapy for treating lung cancer.

PMID:
24684526
PMCID:
PMC4215561
DOI:
10.1089/ars.2013.5469
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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