Send to

Choose Destination
Respirology. 1998 Jun;3(2):119-24.

Nitric oxide expression in airway epithelial cells in response to tubercle bacilli stimulation.

Author information

Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, College of Medicine, Sung Kyun Kwan University, Seoul, Korea.


In order to investigate the role of airway epithelial cells in pulmonary tuberculosis, inducible nitric oxide synthetase (iNOS) expression and nitric oxide (NO) production were studied in A549 cells. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) from normal volunteers were separated and cultured for 24 h with LPS or tubercle bacilli (H37Rv, H37Ra). Thereafter, A549 cells were stimulated for another 24 h with culture supernatant fluids of PBMC. iNOS messenger RNA (mRNA) expression was measured with Northern blot analysis and NO production was measured with the Griess reaction, which can measure nitrite concentration. iNOS mRNA expression and NO production were minimal in the control cells. iNOS mRNA expression and NO production were significantly increased with LPS (P < 0.05) or tubercle bacilli (P < 0.01) stimulation. However, there was no difference in iNOS mRNA expression and NO production between H37Rv and H37Ra stimulations. Interestingly, iNOS mRNA expression and NO production were greater in A549 cells stimulated with tubercle bacilli-conditioned media than in the cells stimulated with LPS-conditioned media. IL-1beta, tumour necrosis factor-alpha and interferon gamma concentrations were increased in culture supernatant fluids of PBMC stimulated with tubercle bacilli. These findings suggest that airway epithelial cells may play a certain role in the pathogenesis of pulmonary tuberculosis by producing NO. However, the role of airway epithelial cells, regarding the virulence of tubercle bacilli, was not clear in this study.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center