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Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 1997 Aug;156(2 Pt 1):642-7.

Transforming growth factor-beta 1 in asthma. Measurement in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid.

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University Medicine, Southampton General Hospital, United Kingdom.


Airway wall remodeling is an established pathological feature in asthma. Its causes are not well understood, but one mediator of potential relevance is transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-beta 1). We have measured levels of immunoreactive TGF-beta 1 in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid from clinically stable atopic asthmatics and healthy control subjects. We have also examined the influence of allergen exposure on TGF-beta 1 release in the airways using a segmental bronchoprovocation model, with BAL performed at two time points following endobronchial allergen and sham saline challenges. Basal concentrations of TGF-beta 1 were significantly higher in asthmatics than control subjects (median 8.0 versus 5.5 pg/ml, p = 0.027). Following segmental bronchoprovocation, concentrations of TGF-beta 1 at the allergen- and saline-challenged sites were not significantly different after 10 min, (31.3 versus 25.0 pg/ml, p = 0.78), but after 24 h there were significantly higher TGF-beta 1 concentrations at the allergen-challenged sites (46.0 versus 21.5 pg/ml, p = 0.017). We conclude that basal TGF-beta 1 levels in the airways are elevated in atopic asthma and that these levels increase further in response to allergen exposure. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that TGF-beta 1 is implicated in airway wall remodeling in asthma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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