The relationship between serum biomarkers and clinical expressions of COPD is limited. We planned to further describe this association using markers of inflammation and injury and repair.
We studied lung function, comorbidities, exercise tolerance, BODE index, and quality of life in 253 COPD patients and recorded mortality over three years. Serum levels of Interleukins 6,8 and16, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF α) [inflammatory panel], vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) [injury and repair panel] and pulmonary and activation-regulated chemokine (PARC/CCL-18) and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (MCP-1/CCL2) [chemoattractant panel] were measured. We related the pattern of the biomarker levels to minimal clinically important differences (MCID) using a novel visualization method [ObServed Clinical Association Results (OSCAR) plot].
Levels of the inflammatory markers IL-6, TNF α were higher and those of injury and repair lower (p < 0.01) with more advanced disease (GOLD 1 vs. 4). Using the OSCAR plot, we found that patients in the highest quartile of inflammatory and lowest quartile of injury and repair biomarkers level were more clinically compromised and had higher mortality (p < 0.05).
In COPD, serum biomarkers of inflammation and repair are distinctly associated with important clinical parameters and survival.
Exercise; Inflammation; Phenotypes; Repair; Survival
The predominant emphysema phenotype is associated with more severe airflow limitation in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A study was undertaken to investigate whether COPD patients, with or without emphysema quantitatively confirmed by high resolution computed tomography (HRCT), have different COPD severity as assessed by the BODE index (body mass index, airflow obstruction, dyspnoea, exercise performance) and inspiratory capacity to total lung capacity ratio (IC/TLC), and by different biological markers of lung parenchymal destruction.
Twenty six outpatients with COPD and eight healthy non‐smokers were examined. Each subject underwent HRCT scanning, pulmonary function tests, cell counts, and measurements of neutrophil elastase, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)‐9 and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)‐1 in induced sputum, as well as measurement of desmosine, a marker of elastin degradation in urine, plasma and sputum.
Patients with HRCT confirmed emphysema had a higher BODE index and lower IC/TLC ratio than subjects without HRCT confirmed emphysema and controls. Forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), FEV1/forced vital capacity ratio, and carbon monoxide transfer coefficient were lower, whereas the number of eosinophils, MMP‐9, and the MMP‐9/TIMP‐1 ratio in sputum were higher in patients with emphysema. In COPD patients the number of sputum eosinophils was the biological variable that correlated positively with the HRCT score of emphysema (p = 0.04).
These results suggest that COPD associated with HRCT confirmed emphysema is characterised by more severe lung function impairment, more intense airway inflammation and, possibly, more serious systemic dysfunction than COPD not associated with HRCT confirmed emphysema.
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; emphysema; biological markers; outcomes
Rationale: There are no accepted blood-based biomarkers in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Pulmonary and activation-regulated chemokine (PARC/CCL-18) is a lung-predominant inflammatory protein that is found in serum.
Objectives: To determine whether PARC/CCL-18 levels are elevated and modifiable in COPD and to determine their relationship to clinical end points of hospitalization and mortality.
Methods: PARC/CCL-18 was measured in serum samples from individuals who participated in the ECLIPSE (Evaluation of COPD Longitudinally to Identify Predictive Surrogate Endpoints) and LHS (Lung Health Study) studies and a prednisolone intervention study.
Measurements and Main Results: Serum PARC/CCL-18 levels were higher in subjects with COPD than in smokers or lifetime nonsmokers without COPD (105 vs. 81 vs. 80 ng/ml, respectively; P < 0.0001). Elevated PARC/CCL-18 levels were associated with increased risk of cardiovascular hospitalization or mortality in the LHS cohort and with total mortality in the ECLIPSE cohort.
Conclusions: Serum PARC/CCL-18 levels are elevated in COPD and track clinical outcomes. PARC/CCL-18, a lung-predominant chemokine, could be a useful blood biomarker in COPD.
Clinical trial registered with www.clinicaltrials.gov (NCT 00292552).
biomarker; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; PARC/CCL-18; chemokine
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an inflammatory lung disease associated with significant systemic consequences. Recognition of the systemic manifestations has stimulated interest in identifying circulating biomarkers in these patients. A systematic analysis was undertaken of multiple protein analytes in the serum of well characterised patients with COPD and matched controls using novel protein microarray platform (PMP) technology.
Forty‐eight patients (65% men) with COPD (forced expiratory volume in 1 s <55%) and 48 matched controls were studied. Anthropometric parameters, pulmonary function tests, 6‐minute walk distance, the BODE index and the number of exacerbations were measured and the association of these outcomes with the baseline levels of 143 serum biomarkers measured by PMP was explored.
Thirty biomarker clusters were identified and ranked by computing the predictive value of each cluster for COPD (partial least squares discriminant analysis). From the 19 best predictive clusters, 2–3 biomarkers were selected based on their pathophysiological profile (chemoattractants, inflammation, tissue destruction and repair) and the statistical significance of their relationship with clinically important end points was tested. The selected panel of 24 biomarkers correlated (p<0.01) with forced expiratory volume in 1 s, carbon monoxide transfer factor, 6‐minute walk distance, BODE index and exacerbation frequency.
PMP technology can be useful in identifying potential biomarkers in patients with COPD. Panels of selected serum markers are associated with important clinical predictors of outcome in these patients.
Rationale: Overproduction of mucus is a contributory factor in the progression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The polymeric mucins are major macromolecules in the secretion. Therefore, we hypothesized that the polymeric mucin composition or properties may be different in the sputum from individuals with COPD and smokers without airflow obstruction.
Objectives: To determine the major polymeric mucins in COPD sputum and whether these are different in the sputum from individuals with COPD compared with that from smokers without airflow obstruction.
Methods: The polymeric mucin composition of sputum from patients with COPD and smokers without airflow obstruction was analyzed by Western blotting analysis. The tissue localization of the mucins was determined by immunohistochemistry, and their size distribution was analyzed by rate–zonal centrifugation.
Measurements and Main Results: MUC5AC and MUC5B were the major mucins. MUC5AC was the predominant mucin in the smoker group, whereas MUC5B was more abundant from the patients with COPD, with a significant difference in the ratio of MUC5B to MUC5AC (P = 0.004); this ratio was correlated with FEV1 in the COPD group (r = 0.63; P = 0.01). The lower-charged glycosylated form of MUC5B was more predominant in COPD (P = 0.012). No significant associations were observed with respect to sex, age, or pack-year history. In both groups, MUC5AC was produced by surface epithelial cells and MUC5B by submucosal gland cells. Finally, there was a shift toward smaller mucins in the COPD group.
Conclusions: Our data indicate that there are differences in mucin amounts and properties between smokers with and without COPD. Further studies are needed to examine how this may impact disease progression.
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; mucus; mucin; pathophysiology
COPD is underdiagnosed and its early assessment is problematic. It has been suggested that symptomatic smokers with normal FEV1/FVC (Stage 0 COPD, GOLD criteria) can develop COPD in the future. Potential early biomarkers in COPD include the matrix metallo-proteinases (MMPs). It is not yet known, whether alterations in MMP expression are associated with smoking alone or with the risk of developing COPD. In this cross-sectional study MMP-8, MMP-9 and MMP-12 were determined from induced sputum and plasma by ELISA, immunocytochemistry, zymography, and/or Western blot in non-smokers (n = 32), smokers with symptoms (Stage 0, GOLD criteria) (n = 23) or without symptoms (n = 23). Only MMP-8 differentiated Stage 0 COPD from non-symptomatic smokers (p = 0.02). MMP-9 levels were significantly elevated in the induced sputum of non-symptomatic smokers and Stage 0 COPD (p = 0.01, p < 0.001) compared to non-smokers, but did not differ between the two subgroups of smokers. MMP-12 was higher only at Stage 0 compared to non-smokers (p = 0.04). MMP-8, MMP-9 and MMP-12 immunoreactivity was localized in macrophages and neutrophils, especially in smokers. MMP-8 levels correlated significantly with the small airway flow parameters (MEF50, MEF25) (p = 0.005 and p = 0.0004) and markers of neutrophil activation (myeloperoxidase, lactoferrin). In conclusion MMP-8 may differentiate Stage 0 from healthy smokers.
cigarette smoking; GOLD; COPD; MMP; myeloperoxidase; oxidant; Stage 0
The Global initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) staging has widely used in the stratification of the severity of COPD, while BODE (body mass index, airflow obstruction, dyspnea, and exercise capacity) index was proven superior to FEV1 in predicting mortality, exacerbation and disease severity in patients with COPD. Clinical COPD Questionnaire (CCQ), a questionnaire with ten items categorized into three domains (symptoms, functional state and mental state) was developed to measure health status of COPD patients. However, little is known about the relationship between CCQ score and BODE index. We performed a prospective study with the inclusion of 89 patients who were clinically stable after a 6-week-therapy for COPD symptoms comparing their health status assessed by CCQ, BODE index and GOLD staging. We found that the total CCQ score was correlated with BODE score (P < 0.001) and GOLD staging (P < 0.001); of three CCQ domains, the functional status correlated the most with BODE index (rS = 0.670) and GOLD staging (rS = 0.531), followed by symptoms (rS = 0.482; rS = 0.346, respectively), and mental status (rS = 0.340; rS = 0.236, respectively). Our data suggest that CCQ is a reliable and convenient alternative tool to evaluate the severity of COPD.
This study was designed to evaluate the levels of hepcidin in the serum of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
In the study, 74 male patients (ages 45-75) in a stable period for COPD were grouped as Group I: Mild COPD (n:25), Group II: Moderate COPD (n:24), and Group III: Severe COPD (n:25). Healthy non-smoker males were included in Group IV (n:35) as a control group. The differences of hepcidin level among all the groups were examined. Also, in the patient groups with COPD, hepcidin level was compared with age, body mass index, cigarette (package/year), blood parameters (iron, total iron binding capacity, ferritin, hemoglobin, hematocrit [hct]), respiratory function tests, and arterial blood gas results.
Although there was no difference between the healthy control group and the mild COPD patient group (P=0.781) in terms of hepcidin level, there was a difference between the moderate (P=0.004) and the severe COPD patient groups (P=0.002). The hepcidin level of the control group was found to be higher than the moderate and severe COPD patient groups. In the severe COPD patients, hepcidin level increased with the increase in serum iron (P=0.000), hct (P=0.009), ferritin levels (P=0.012), and arterial oxygen saturation (SaO2, P=0.000).
The serum hepcidin level that is decreased in severe COPD brings into mind that it may play a role in the mechanism to prevent hypoxemia. The results suggest that serum hepcidin level may be a useful marker in COPD. Larger prospective studies are needed to confirm our findings between hepcidin and COPD.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; hepcidin; hypoxemia
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a complex condition with pulmonary and extra-pulmonary manifestations. This study describes the heterogeneity of COPD in a large and well characterised and controlled COPD cohort (ECLIPSE).
We studied 2164 clinically stable COPD patients, 337 smokers with normal lung function and 245 never smokers. In these individuals, we measured clinical parameters, nutritional status, spirometry, exercise tolerance, and amount of emphysema by computed tomography.
COPD patients were slightly older than controls and had more pack years of smoking than smokers with normal lung function. Co-morbidities were more prevalent in COPD patients than in controls, and occurred to the same extent irrespective of the GOLD stage. The severity of airflow limitation in COPD patients was poorly related to the degree of breathlessness, health status, presence of co-morbidity, exercise capacity and number of exacerbations reported in the year before the study. The distribution of these variables within each GOLD stage was wide. Even in subjects with severe airflow obstruction, a substantial proportion did not report symptoms, exacerbations or exercise limitation. The amount of emphysema increased with GOLD severity. The prevalence of bronchiectasis was low (4%) but also increased with GOLD stage. Some gender differences were also identified.
The clinical manifestations of COPD are highly variable and the degree of airflow limitation does not capture the heterogeneity of the disease.
The identification and validation of biomarkers to support the assessment of novel therapeutics for COPD continues to be an important area of research. The aim of the current study was to identify systemic protein biomarkers correlated with measures of COPD severity, as well as specific protein signatures associated with comorbidities such as metabolic syndrome. 142 protein analytes were measured in serum of 140 patients with stable COPD, 15 smokers without COPD and 30 non-smoking controls. Seven analytes (sRAGE, EN-RAGE, NGAL, Fibrinogen, MPO, TGF-α and HB-EGF) showed significant differences between severe/very severe COPD, mild/moderate COPD, smoking and non-smoking control groups. Within the COPD subjects, univariate and multivariate analyses identified analytes significantly associated with FEV1, FEV1/FVC and DLCO. Most notably, a set of 5 analytes (HB-EGF, Fibrinogen, MCP-4, sRAGE and Sortilin) predicted 21% of the variability in DLCO values. To determine common functions/pathways, analytes were clustered in a correlation network by similarity of expression profile. While analytes related to neutrophil function (EN-RAGE, NGAL, MPO) grouped together to form a cluster associated with FEV1 related parameters, analytes related to the EGFR pathway (HB-EGF, TGF-α) formed another cluster associated with both DLCO and FEV1 related parameters. Associations of Fibrinogen with DLCO and MPO with FEV1/FVC were stronger in patients without metabolic syndrome (r = −0.52, p = 0.005 and r = −0.61, p = 0.023, respectively) compared to patients with coexisting metabolic syndrome (r = −0.25, p = 0.47 and r = −0.15, p = 0.96, respectively), and may be driving overall associations in the general cohort. In summary, our study has identified known and novel serum protein biomarkers and has demonstrated specific associations with COPD disease severity, FEV1, FEV1/FVC and DLCO. These data highlight systemic inflammatory pathways, neutrophil activation and epithelial tissue injury/repair processes as key pathways associated with COPD.
Background and objective
Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) present with reduced exercise capacity due to impaired oxygen consumption (VO2), caused primarily by pulmonary dysfunction and deleterious peripheral adaptations. Assuming that COPD patients present with slower VO2 and heart rate (HR) on-kinetics, we hypothesized that this finding is related to disease severity as measured by the BODE Index. In this context, the present study intends to evaluate the relationship between VO2 uptake on-kinetics during high-intensity exercise and the BODE Index in patients with COPD.
Twenty males with moderate-to-severe stable COPD and 13 healthy control subjects matched by age and sex were evaluated. COPD patients were screened by the BODE Index and then underwent an incremental cardiopulmonary exercise test and a constant speed treadmill session at 70% of maximal intensity for 6 minutes. The onset of the exercise (first 360 seconds) response for O2 uptake and HR was modeled according to a monoexponential fit.
Oxygen consumption and HR on-kinetics were slower in the COPD group compared with controls. Additionally, VO2 on-kinetic parameters revealed a strong positive correlation (r = 0.77, P < 0.05) with BODE scores and a moderate negative correlation with walking distance (r = −0.45, P < 0.05).
Our data show that moderate-to-severe COPD is related to impaired oxygen delivery and utilization during the onset of intense exercise.
COPD; VO2 on-kinetics; heart rate; BODE Index
Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) often experience depression and anxiety, but little information is available regarding Chinese patients with these conditions. The present study assessed depression and anxiety in Chinese patients with COPD.
A case–controlled study was designed with 1100 patients with COPD enrolled in the case group and1100 residents without COPD and respiratory symptoms selected as the control group. Anxiety and depression in both groups were evaluated using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). The body mass index,degree of airflow obstruction, dyspnea, and exercise capacity (BODE ) index was used to assess COPD severity. Binary logistic regression models were used to test the association between anxiety and depression.
The patients with COPD were more likely than controls to experience depression (cases, HADS 10.5 ± 3.6, prevalence 35.7%; controls, HADS 8.7 ± 2.7, prevalence 7.2%) and anxiety (cases, HADS 10.4 ± 3.1, prevalence 18.3%; controls, HADS 8.6 ± 2.1, prevalence 5.3%). Subjects with anxious and depressive symptoms had poorer health outcomes including a higher BODE index, a shorter 6-minute-walk distance (6MWD), more dyspnea, and a higher St George’s respiratory questionnaire (SGRQ) score. The prevalence of anxious and depressive symptoms increased with increasing BODE scores. On the basis of binary logistic regression, the BODE index was significantly correlated with anxiety (OR = 1.47, p < 0.001) and depression (OR = 1.51, p < 0.001). Anxious and depressive symptoms were also associated with several factors including younger age, female sex, higher education level, lower household income and history of smoking.
This study confirmed the high prevalence of anxiety and depression in Chinese outpatients with COPD. Patients with COPD who had anxiety and/or depression had a poorer health-related quality of life.
Chinese Clinical Trials Registration(ChiCTR-TRC-12001958)
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; Anxiety; Depression; Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale
BACKGROUND—It has been
suggested that oxidative stress is an important factor in the
pathogenesis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We have
shown that an oxidant/antioxidant imbalance occurs in the distal air
spaces of smokers and in patients with COPD which is reflected
systemically in the plasma. A study was undertaken to determine whether
plasma antioxidant status correlated with lung function as assessed by
forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and forced
vital capacity (FVC) in smokers and patients with COPD.
antioxidant capacity, assessed by the Trolox equivalent antioxidant
capacity (TEAC) as an index of overall systemic oxidative stress, and
protein thiol levels were measured in 95patients with stable COPD, in
82 healthy smokers, and in 37 healthy non-smokers.
plasma TEAC levels were significantly decreased in patients with COPD
(0.81 (0.03) mmol/l, p<0.001) and in healthy smokers (0.87 (0.04) mmol/l, p<0.001) compared with healthy non-smokers (1.31 (0.11) mmol/l). The mean differences in plasma antioxidant capacity
(mM) were (0.81, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.22 to 1.48), (0.87, 95% CI 0.2 to 1.46), and (1.31, 95% CI 1.09 to 1.58) in patients with
COPD, healthy smokers, and healthy non-smokers, respectively. This
reduction was associated with a 29% (95% CI 18 to 38) and a 30%
(95% CI 19 to 40) decrease in plasma protein thiol levels in COPD
patients and smokers, respectively. Current smoking was not the main
contributor to the reduction in antioxidant capacity in patients with
COPD as those patients who were still smokers had similar TEAC levels
(mean (SE) 0.78 (0.05); n = 25) to those who had stopped smoking (0.84 (0.02); n = 70). No significant correlations were found between
spirometric data measured as FEV1 % predicted or
FEV1/FVC % predicted and the plasma levels of TEAC in
patients with COPD, healthy smokers, or healthy non-smokers. Similarly,
there was no significant correlation between FEV1 %predicted or FEV1/FVC % predicted and the levels of plasma
protein thiols in the three groups.
confirm decreased antioxidant capacity in smokers and patients with
COPD, indicating the presence of systemic oxidative stress. However, no
relationship was found between protein thiols or TEAC levels and
measurements of airflow limitation in either smokers or in patients
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is considered to be a respiratory disease with systemic manifestations. Some multidimensional staging systems, not based solely on the level of airflow limitation, have been developed; however, these systems have rarely been compared.
We previously recruited 150 male outpatients with COPD for an analysis of factors related to mortality. For this report, we examined the discriminative and prognostic predictive properties of three COPD multidimensional measurements. These indices were the modified BODE (mBODE), which includes body mass index, airflow obstruction, dyspnea, and exercise capacity; the ADO, composed of age, dyspnea, and airflow obstruction; and the modified DOSE (mDOSE), comprising dyspnea, airflow obstruction, smoking status, and exacerbation frequency.
Among these indices, the frequency distribution of the mBODE index was the most widely and normally distributed. Univariate Cox proportional hazards analyses revealed that the scores on three indices were significantly predictive of 5-year mortality of COPD (P < 0.001). The scores on the mBODE and ADO indices were more significantly predictive of mortality than forced expiratory volume in 1 second, the Medical Research Council dyspnea score, and the St. George’s Respiratory Questionnaire total score. However, peak oxygen uptake on progressive cycle ergometry was more significantly related to mortality than the scores on the three indices (P < 0.0001).
The multidimensional staging systems using the mBODE, ADO, and mDOSE indices were significant predictors of mortality in COPD patients, although exercise capacity had a more significant relationship with mortality than those indices. The mBODE index was superior to the others for its discriminative property. Further discussion of the definition of disease severity is necessary to promote concrete multidimensional staging systems as a new disease severity index in guidelines for the management of COPD.
COPD; multidimensional staging systems; BODE index; ADO index; DOSE index
Elevated circulating levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin (IL)-6 and fibrinogen (FG) have been repeatedly associated with many adverse outcomes in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). To date, it remains unclear whether and to what extent systemic inflammation is primary or secondary in the pathogenesis of COPD.
The aim of this study was to examine the association between haplotypes of CRP, IL6 and FGB genes, systemic inflammation, COPD risk and COPD-related phenotypes (respiratory impairment, exercise capacity and body composition).
Eighteen SNPs in three genes, representing optimal haplotype-tagging sets, were genotyped in 355 COPD patients and 195 healthy smokers. Plasma levels of CRP, IL-6 and FG were measured in the total study group. Differences in haplotype distributions were tested using the global and haplotype-specific statistics.
Raised plasma levels of CRP, IL-6 and fibrinogen were demonstrated in COPD patients. However, COPD population was very heterogeneous: about 40% of patients had no evidence of systemic inflammation (CRP < 3 mg/uL or no inflammatory markers in their top quartile). Global test for haplotype effect indicated association of CRP gene and CRP plasma levels (P = 0.0004) and IL6 gene and COPD (P = 0.003). Subsequent analysis has shown that IL6 haplotype H2, associated with an increased COPD risk (p = 0.004, OR = 4.82; 1.64 to 4.18), was also associated with very low CRP levels (p = 0.0005). None of the genes were associated with COPD-related phenotypes.
Our findings suggest that common genetic variation in CRP and IL6 genes may contribute to heterogeneity of COPD population associated with systemic inflammation.
The aim of this study was to characterize the elemental composition of exhaled breath condensate (EBC) in order to identify new biomarkers of exposure and susceptibility in COPD patients. Serum pneumoproteins were used as lung-specific biomarkers of effect.
EBC was obtained from 50 healthy subjects, 30 healthy smokers, 30 asthmatics, and 50 patients with stable COPD, and was collected by cooling exhaled air. Trace elements and toxic metals in the samples were measured by means of inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry and electrothermal atomic absorption spectroscopy. The serum pneumoproteins were immunoassayed.
The EBC of COPD subjects had higher levels of such toxic elements as lead, cadmium, and aluminum, and lower levels of iron and copper, than that of the nonsmoking control subjects. There were no between-group differences in surfactant protein (SP)-A and SP-B levels. Clara-cell protein and SP-D levels were negatively and positively influenced, respectively, by tobacco smoke.
Our results show that toxic metals and transition elements are detectable in the EBC of studied subjects. We propose new biomarkers of exposure as a means of assessing the target tissue dose of carcinogenic and pneumotoxic substances from tobacco smoke or polluted workplaces, and the use of the transition elements involved in redox systems of oxidative stress as disease biomarkers associated with effect or susceptibility. Together with biomarkers of effect, such as serum pneumoproteins, the elemental composition of EBC may be clinically useful in distinguishing similar diseases.
COPD; exhaled breath condensate; metals; pneumoproteins; trace elements; ANOVA = analysis of variance; CC16 = Clara-cell secretary protein; EBC = exhaled breath condensate; ETAAS = electrothermal atomic absorption spectroscopy; ICP-MS = inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry; LOD = limit of detection; PM = particulate matter; SOD = superoxide dismutase; SP = surfactant protein
Rationale and objectives
Quadriceps strength relates to exercise capacity and prognosis in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We wished to quantify the prevalence of quadriceps weakness in COPD, and hypothesised that it would not be restricted to patients with severe airflow obstruction or dyspnoea.
Predicted quadriceps strength was calculated using a regression equation (incorporating age, gender, height and fat-free mass), based on measurements from 212 healthy subjects. The prevalence of weakness (defined as observed values 1.645 standardised residuals below predicted) was related to GOLD stage and Medical Research Council (MRC) dyspnoea score in two cohorts of stable COPD outpatients recruited from the United Kingdom (n=240) and the Netherlands (n=351).
32% and 33% of UK and Dutch COPD patients had quadriceps weakness. A significant proportion of patients in GOLD stages 1 and 2, or with an MRC dyspnoea score of 1 or 2, had quadriceps weakness (28% and 26% respectively). These values rose to 38% in GOLD stage 4, and 43% in patients with an MRC Score of 4 or 5.
Quadriceps weakness was demonstrable in one-third of COPD patients attending hospital respiratory outpatient services. Quadriceps weakness exists in the absence of severe airflow obstruction or breathlessness.
Limited data is available on the clinical expression of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) from India. The impact of gender on expression of COPD has received even less attention. Apart from tobacco smoke, indoor air pollution, especially from biomass fuel may play an important role in development of COPD in women.
Materials and Methods:
Seven hundred and two patients of COPD were studied regarding the etiological and risk factors leading to COPD, gender-related differences in clinical presentation, radiological expression of COPD and the co-morbidities in COPD.
Tobacco smoke in the form of beedi smoking was the predominant smoke exposure in males, whereas smoke from biofuel burning was the predominant exposure in females. As compared to males, females were younger, reported more dyspnea, more severe bronchial obstruction, more exacerbations, and exhibited higher prevalence of systemic features. Also, females smoked less and had lesser incidence of productive cough, lower body mass index, lesser co-morbidities and less number of hospital admissions as compared to males. Males were more likely than females to have an emphysema-predominant phenotype, while airway-predominant disease was more common among females.
The current study shows that gender-related differences do exist in COPD patients. Understanding these differences in etiological agent and clinical picture will help early diagnosis of COPD in females.
Biomass fuel; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; gender; indoor pollution; smoking
Rationale: Inflammation is now recognized as an integral part of the pathogenesis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In contrast to the sterile airways of normal lungs, bacterial pathogens are often isolated from the airways in stable COPD. This “colonization” of the tracheobronchial tree, currently believed to be innocuous, could serve as an inflammatory stimulus, independent of current tobacco smoke exposure.
Objective: To test the hypothesis that bacterial colonization is associated with airway inflammation in stable COPD.
Methods: Bronchoscopy with bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) was performed in three groups of subjects: 26 ex-smokers with stable COPD (COPD), 20 ex-smokers without COPD (ex-smokers), and 15 healthy nonsmokers (nonsmokers). Quantitative bacterial cultures, cell counts, chemokine, cytokine, proteinase/antiproteinase, and endotoxin levels in the BAL fluid were compared.
Results: Potentially pathogenic bacteria were recovered at ⩾ 100 cfu/ml in 34.6% of COPD, 0% of ex-smokers, and in 6.7% of nonsmokers (p = 0.003). All values are expressed as median (interquartile range). Subjects with colonized COPD had significantly greater relative (12.0 [28.4] vs. 3.0 [7.8]%, p = 0.03) and absolute (4.98 [5.26] × 104/ml vs. 3.04 [2.82] × 104/ml, p = 0.02) neutrophil counts, interleukin 8 (33.8 [189.8] vs. 16.9 [20.1] pg/ml, p = 0.005), active matrix metalloproteinase-9 (2.16 [4.30] vs. 0.84 [0.99] U/ml, p = 0.03), and endotoxin (36.0 [72.6] vs. 3.55 [7.17] mEU/ml, p = 0.004) levels in the BAL than the subjects with noncolonized COPD. These inflammatory constituents of BAL were also significantly elevated in subjects with colonized COPD when compared with ex-smokers and nonsmokers.
Conclusions: Bacterial colonization is associated with neutrophilic airway lumen inflammation in ex-smokers with COPD and could contribute to progression of airway disease in COPD.
bacterial colonization; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; neutrophilic inflammation
Circulating markers of inflammation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) may correlate to disease progression and extrapulmonary complications such as malnourishment. However, surprisingly little is known about gender-related differences for circulating inflammatory markers in COPD.
To characterize differences in circulating markers of inflammation in malnourished female and male patients with COPD.
Thirty female and 11 male patients with a clinical diagnosis of COPD and malnourishment were examined. A group of control subjects without evidence of COPD was recruited for comparison of some variables.
Blood samples were drawn, and the following parameters were studied: leukocytes and differential counts, C-reactive protein (CRP), tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-8, myeloperoxidase (MPO), neutrophil elastase (NE), intracellular adhesion molecule-1, vascular endothelial adhesion molecule-1, and E-selectin.
The mean neutrophil concentration was significantly (P = 0.019) higher in female (4.5 × 109/L) than in male patients with COPD (3.5 × 109/L) and significantly higher than in female control subjects (3.1 × 109/L) (P < 0.01, n = 85). The mean CRP values were considerably higher in female (4.9 mg/mL) than in male patients with COPD (1.5 mg/mL), but the difference was not statistically significant (P = 0.20). The mean concentrations of IL-6 and IL-8 tended to be higher in female than in male patients with COPD, but these differences did not reach statistical significance either (P > 0.05). Confounding factors (smoking, medication) could not explain the gender differences noted. The concentrations of MPO and NE displayed a strong correlation (r = 0.89; P < 0.01, n = 41) but revealed no gender differences. The latter was true for concentrations of adhesion molecules as well.
Our study puts forward evidence of a gender-related difference in systemic inflammation in malnourished patients with COPD in terms of circulating neutrophils being more abundant in female patients. Among these female patients, there was also a trend toward an increase in two neutrophil-mobilizing cytokines. New and better-powered studies are warranted to confirm and characterize this potentially important phenomenon in greater detail.
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; inflammatory markers; leukocytosis; malnutrition
To verify whether and to what extent the body mass index, airflow obstruction, dyspnea, and exercise capacity (BODE) index correlates with a disease-specific index of health status in patients with COPD.
One hundred patients with stable COPD recruited from the outpatient clinic of a single institution.
The BODE index was calculated for each patient using variables obtained within 2 weeks of enrollment. At enrollment, all patients completed the St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ). The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to compare health status scores with clinical and functional categories of COPD. The Spearman correlation coefficient (r) was calculated to assess the association between health status scores and clinical or functional variables.
Categorizing the BODE scores into 4 quartiles, we found that higher BODE quartiles were associated with higher (worse) SGRQ scores. The differences among the BODE quartiles in health status indexes were significant for total SGRQ as well as all 3 of the SGRQ sub-scales. In all sections of the SGRQ, scores were moderately to strongly associated with the BODE quartiles (r = 0.27–0.46). In contrast, the association between the SGRQ total, impacts, activity and Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) stages were weaker (r = 0.27–0.28). There was no significant association between SGRQ symptoms and GOLD stages.
The BODE scoring system corresponds to important differences in health status of patients with COPD. This grading system is better correlated to the health status indexes of the SGRQ than the GOLD staging criteria.
body mass index; airflow obstruction; dyspnea; exercise capacity; quality of life; questionnaire
Several matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are involved in the pathogenesis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In mice, MMP‐12 plays a crucial role in the development of cigarette smoke induced emphysema. A study was undertaken to investigate the role of MMP‐12 in the development of COPD in human smokers.
Induced sputum samples were collected from patients with stable COPD (n = 28), healthy smokers (n = 14), never smokers (n = 20), and former smokers (n = 14). MMP‐12 protein levels in induced sputum were determined by ELISA and compared between the four study groups. MMP‐12 enzymatic activity in induced sputum was evaluated by casein zymography and by cleaving of a fluorescence quenched substrate.
Median (IQR) MMP‐12 levels were significantly higher in COPD patients than in healthy smokers, never smokers, and former smokers (17.5 (7.1–42.1) v 6.7 (3.9–10.4) v 4.2 (2.4–11.3) v 6.1 (4.5–7.6) ng/ml, p = 0.0002). MMP‐12 enzymatic activity was significantly higher in patients with COPD than in controls (4.11 (1.4–8.0) v 0.14 (0.1–0.2) μg/μl, p = 0.0002).
MMP‐12 is markedly increased in induced sputum from patients with stable COPD compared with controls, suggesting a role for MMP‐12 in the development of COPD in smokers.
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; matrix metalloproteinases; induced sputum; MMP‐12; smoking
Although recent studies have found that total plasma homocysteine (tHCY) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are both risk factors for cardiac disease, there have been few studies of plasma homocysteine levels in COPD patients. We tested the hypothesis that total plasma homocysteine (tHCY) would be elevated in patients diagnosed with COPD compared with controls.
We studied 29 COPD outpatients and 25 asymptomatic subjects (controls) over age 55 years with measurement of forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC), St. Georges Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ) score, tHCY and serum C-reactive protein (sCRP).
There was no difference between controls vs. COPD patients in mean age or gender but mean (SD) FEV1 was 2.25 (0.77) vs 1.43 (0.60) L; FEV1% predicted 76.1 (17.2) vs 49.1 (16.3) p < 0.001 in both cases. Median (IQR) tHCY was 8.22 (6.63, 9.55) in controls vs 10.96 (7.56, 13.60) micromol/l for COPD, p = 0.006 and sCRP 0.89 (0.47, 2.55) vs 2.05 (0.86, 6.19) mg/l, p = 0.023. tHCY(log) was also higher in (r, p) smokers (0.448, 0.001), patients with low FEV1% (−0.397, 0.003), males (0.475, <0.001), but high SGRQ Total score (0.289, 0.034), and high sCRP (0.316, 0.038). tHCY(log) was independently related to (regression coefficient, p) sCRP(log) (0.087, 0.024), male gender (0.345, <0.001) and presence of COPD (0.194, 0.031). Median (IQR) tHCY GOLD Stage I and II 8.05 (7.28, 11.04), GOLD Stage III and IV: 11.83(9.30, 18.30); p = 0.023.
Plasma homocysteine is significantly elevated in COPD patients relative to age and sex-matched controls and is related to serum CRP and COPD severity.
COPD; Homocysteine; CRP; SGRQ; FEV1
Objectives; Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is a common and well established complication of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Its presence is associated with decreased survival. This study was designed to investigate the PH frequency and its relations in hospitalized tobacco and biomass related COPD patients. Methods and Results; The study was a retrospective review of inpatients with COPD defined as a history of tobacco or biomass smoking, Pulmonary function tests (PFT) within stable status, an echocardiogram within stable status. PH was defined as systolic pulmonary artery pressure (sPAP) >35 mmHg. Of the 694 individuals, 600 had suitable aspects for inclusion of study. All Females were biomass exposer and males were tobacco smoker. The Prevalence of PH was found more frequent in females than males. It was more prominent in moderate level COPD cases (56,2% and 37,5%, P<0,002). Both groups had airflow limitation, hypercapnia and hypoxemia, but no differences were found in terms of PaCO2 and PaO2. However, FEV1 % was lower in males than females (p<0,005). On the other hand, FVC % was lower in the females compared with the males (p < 0.02). When analyzing the influence of PFT and demographic parameters on PH in separate COPD level groups, the results a bit varied among the groups. Conclusion; Our study demonstrated that PH frequency is higher in female COPD cases due to biomass smoke than in male COPD cases due to tobacco smoke. The influence of FVC % on the risk of a person having PH increased with increasing COPD level.
COPD; Pulmonary Hypertension; Environmental pollutants; Smoking.
International Collaborative Effort on Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease: Exacerbation Risk Index Cohorts (ICE COLD ERIC) is a prospective cohort study with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients from Switzerland and The Netherlands designed to develop and validate practical COPD risk indices that predict the clinical course of COPD patients in primary care. This paper describes the characteristics of the cohorts at baseline.
Material and methods
Standardized assessments included lung function, patient history, self-administered questionnaires, exercise capacity, and a venous blood sample for analysis of biomarkers and genetics.
A total of 260 Dutch and 151 Swiss patients were included. Median age was 66 years, 57% were male, 38% were current smokers, 55% were former smokers, and 76% had at least one and 40% had two or more comorbidities with cardiovascular disease being the most prevalent one. The use of any pulmonary and cardiovascular drugs was 84% and 66%, respectively. Although lung function results (median forced expiratory volume in 1 second [FEV1] was 59% of predicted) were similar across the two cohorts, Swiss patients reported better COPD-specific health-related quality of life (Chronic Respiratory Questionnaire) and had higher exercise capacity.
COPD patients in the ICE COLD ERIC study represent a wide range of disease severities and the prevalence of multimorbidity is high. The rich variation in these primary care cohorts offers good opportunities to learn more about the clinical course of COPD.
COPD; exacerbation; health-related quality of life; prediction; prognosis