Fusobacterium nucleatum is one of the most common anaerobic bacteria in periodontitis and is responsible for several extraoral infections, including respiratory tract diseases. In this study, we examined whether F. nucleatum induces mucin secretion in airway epithelial cells. We also examined the effects of macrolides on F. nucleatum-induced mucus production compared with the effects of other antibiotics that exert anti-anaerobic activities. The production of MUC5AC, the major core protein of mucin secreted from the airway surface epithelium, in bronchial epithelial cells after stimulation with culture supernatants (Sup) of F. nucleatum was analyzed by performing enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and quantitative RT-PCR. The cell-signaling pathway of F. nucleatum Sup stimulation was also analyzed by Western blotting. For inhibition studies, cells were treated with azithromycin, clarithromycin, clindamycin (CLDM), and metronidazole (MTZ). The F. nucleatum Sup induced NCI-H292 cells to express MUC5AC at both the protein level and the mRNA level in both a time- and dose-dependent manner. Macrolides inhibited F. nucleatum Sup-induced MUC5AC production, while CLDM and MTZ were less effective. F. nucleatum Sup induced the phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2), and this induction was suppressed by macrolides. F. nucleatum Sup-induced MUC5AC production was blocked by the ERK pathway inhibitor U0126. F. nucleatum is likely to contribute to excessive mucin production, which suggests that periodontitis may correlate with the pathogenesis of chronic respiratory tract infection. Macrolides seem to reduce this mucin production and might represent an additional means of therapeutic intervention for F. nucleatum respiratory tract infections other than CLDM and MTZ.
This study investigated the major clinical determinants of late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) at ventricular insertion points (VIPs) commonly seen in patients with pulmonary hypertension (PH).
Forty-six consecutive PH patients (mean pulmonary artery pressure ≥25 mmHg at rest) and 21 matched controls were examined. Right ventricular (RV) morphology, function and LGE mass volume at VIPs were assessed by cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR). Radial motion of the left ventricular (LV) wall and interventricular septum (IVS) was assessed by speckle-tracking echocardiography. Paradoxical IVS motion index was then calculated. Univariate and multivariate regression analysis were conducted to characterize the relationship between LGE volume at VIPs and PH-related clinical indices, including the paradoxical IVS motion index.
Mean pulmonary arterial pressure (MPAP) of PH patients was 38±9 mmHg. LGE at VIPs was observed in 42 of 46 PH patients, and the LGE volume was 2.02 mL (0.47–2.99 mL). Significant correlations with LGE volume at VIPs were observed for MPAP (r = 0.50) and CMR-derived parameters [RV mass index (r = 0.53), RV end-diastolic volume index (r = 0.53), RV ejection fraction (r = −0.56), and paradoxical IVS motion index (r = 0.77)]. In multiple regression analysis, paradoxical IVS motion index alone significantly predicted LGE volume at VIPs (p<0.001).
LGE at VIPs seen in patients with PH appears to reflect altered IVS motion rather than elevated RV pressure or remodeling. Long-term studies would be of benefit to characterize the clinical relevance of LGE at VIPs.
Background and objectives
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is responsible for significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. We evaluated the characteristics of stable COPD patients in the pulmonology clinics of seven Asian cities and also evaluated whether the exposure to biomass fuels and dusty jobs were related to respiratory symptoms, airflow limitation, and quality of life in the COPD patients.
This cross-sectional observational study recruited 922 COPD patients from seven cities of Asia. The patients underwent spirometry and were administered questionnaires about their exposure to cigarette smoking, biomass fuels, and dusty jobs in addition to respiratory symptoms and health related quality of life.
Of the patients, there appeared to be variations from city to city in the history of exposure to biomass fuels and dusty jobs and also in respiratory symptoms of cough, phlegm, wheeze, and dyspnea. These symptoms were more frequent in those COPD patients with a history of exposure to biomass fuels than without and those with a history of exposure to dusty jobs than without (P < 0.01 for all comparisons). Airflow limitation was more severe in those COPD patients with a history of exposure to biomass fuels than without (52.2% predicted versus 55.9% of post-bronchodilator forced expiratory volume in 1 second [FEV1], P = 0.009); quality of life was poorer in those with exposure to biomass fuels than without (40.4 versus 36.2 of the St George’s Respiratory Questionnaire [SGRQ] total score, P = 0.001). Airflow limitation was more severe in those COPD patients with a history of exposure to dusty jobs than without (51.2% predicted versus 57.3% of post-bronchodilator FEV1, P < 0.001); quality of life was poorer in those with dusty jobs than without (41.0 versus 34.6 of SGRQ score, P = 0.006).
In Asian cities, the characteristics of COPD patients vary and the history of exposure to biomass fuels or dusty jobs was related to frequency of symptoms, severe airflow limitation, and poor quality of life.
COPD; Asia; biomass; dust
The BH3-only members of the Bcl-2 protein family have been proposed to play a key role in the control of apoptosis and in the initiation of the apoptotic pathways. In this study, we evaluated the expression of Bim, Noxa, and Puma in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
A total of 135 surgically resected NSCLCs were immunohistochemically assessed for Bim, Noxa, and Puma expression. The immunoscores were determined, and then its correlation with either the clinicopathological variables or the survival outcomes were analyzed.
Immunohistochemical reactivity for Bim, Noxa, and Puma was detected in the cytoplasm of the tumor cells. Bim expression was associated with several clinicopathological factors, including sex (p < 0.001), smoking habit (p = 0.03), pathological histology (p = 0.001), pathological T stage (p = 0.03), pathological disease stage (p = 0.02), and differentiation of tumor (p < 0.001). Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed a significant correlation between low Bim expression and squamous cell carcinoma (p = 0.04), in addition to a correlation between high Bim expression and well differentiated tumors (p = 0.02). Analysis of cellular biological expression demonstrated a link between low Bim expression and high Ki67. While Noxa expression was also shown to be correlated with both smoking habit (p = 0.02) and the pathological histology (p = 0.03), there was no strong association observed between the expression and the clinical features when they were examined by a multivariate logistic regression analysis. No correlations were noted between Puma expression and any of the variables. Our analyses also indicated that the expression levels of the BH3-only proteins were not pertinent to the survival outcome.
The current analyses demonstrated that Bim expression in the NSCLCs was associated with both squamous cell carcinoma histology and tumor proliferation.
Serum Krebs von den Lungen-6 (KL-6), which is classified as human mucin-1 (MUC1), is used as a marker of sarcoidosis and other interstitial lung diseases. However, there remain some limitations due to a lack of information on the factors contributing to increased levels of serum KL-6. This study was designed to investigate the factors contributing to increased levels of serum KL-6 by molecular analysis.
Western blot analysis using anti-KL-6 antibody was performed simultaneously on the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and serum obtained from 128 subjects with sarcoidosis.
KL-6/MUC1 in BALF showed three bands and five band patterns. These band patterns were associated with the MUC1 genotype and the KL-6 levels. KL-6/MUC1 band patterns in serum were dependent on molecular size class in BALF. Significantly increased levels of serum KL-6, serum/BALF KL-6 ratio and serum soluble interleukin 2 receptor were observed in the subjects with influx of high molecular size KL-6/MUC1 from the alveoli to blood circulation. The multivariate linear regression analysis involving potentially relevant variables such as age, gender, smoking status, lung parenchymal involvement based on radiographical stage and molecular size of KL-6/MUC1 in serum showed that the molecular size of KL-6/MUC1 in serum was significant independent determinant of serum KL-6 levels.
The molecular structural variants of KL-6/MUC1 and its leakage behavior affect serum levels of KL-6 in sarcoidosis. This information may assist in the interpretation of serum KL-6 levels in sarcoidosis.
Serum KL-6; Molecular structural variant; Sarcoidosis
This study evaluated the efficacy and safety of the long-acting β2-agonist formoterol in patients with moderate-to-severe COPD.
This double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, multinational phase III study randomized patients ≥ 40 years of age with moderate-to-severe COPD to inhaled formoterol 4.5 or 9 μg twice daily (bid) via Turbuhaler® or placebo for 12 weeks. Salbutamol 100 μg/actuation via pMDI was permitted as reliever medication. The primary outcome variable was change (ratio) from baseline to treatment period in FEV1 60-min post-dose.
613 patients received treatment (formoterol 4.5 μg n = 206; 9 μg n = 199; placebo n = 208); 539 (87.9%) male; 324 (52.9%) Japanese and 289 (47.1%) European. End of study increases in FEV1 60-min post-dose were significantly greater (p < 0.001 for both) with formoterol 4.5 and 9 μg bid (113% of baseline for both) than with placebo, as were all secondary outcome measures. The proportion of patients with an improvement in St George's Respiratory Questionnaire score of ≥ 4 was 50.2% for formoterol 4.5 μg (p = 0.0682 vs. placebo), 59.2% (p = 0.0004) for 9 μg, and 41.3% for placebo. Reduction in reliever medication use was significantly greater with formoterol vs. placebo (9 μg: -0.548, p < 0.001; 4.5 μg: -0.274, p = 0.027), with 9 μg being significantly superior to 4.5 μg (-0.274, p = 0.029). Formoterol was well tolerated with the incidence and type of adverse events not being different for the three groups.
Formoterol 4.5 μg and 9 μg bid was effective and well tolerated in patients with COPD; there was no difference between formoterol doses for the primary endpoint; however, an added value of formoterol 9 μg over 4.5 μg bid was observed for some secondary endpoints.
NCT00628862 (ClinicalTrials.gov); D5122C00001 (AstraZeneca Study code).
Bronchoscopy using endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) can help to diagnose small peripheral pulmonary lesions. However, although biopsy sites can be confirmed, a bronchoscope cannot be guided in EBUS. Virtual bronchoscopic navigation (VBN) can guide a bronchoscope with virtual images, but its value has not been confirmed.
This prospective multicentre study examines the value of VBN-assisted EBUS for diagnosing small peripheral pulmonary lesions. 199 patients with small peripheral pulmonary lesions (diameter ≤30 mm) were randomly assigned to VBN-assisted (VBNA) or non-VBN-assisted (NVBNA) groups. A bronchoscope was introduced into the target bronchus of the VBNA group using the VBN system. Sites of specimen sampling were verified using EBUS with a guide sheath under fluoroscopy.
The diagnostic yield was higher for the VBNA than for the NVBNA group (80.4% vs 67.0%; p=0.032). The duration of the examination and time elapsed until the start of sample collection were reduced in the VBNA compared with the NVBNA group (median (range), 24.0 (8.7–47.0) vs 26.2 (11.6–58.6) min, p=0.016) and 8.1 (2.8–39.2) vs 9.8 (2.3–42.3) min, p=0.045, respectively). The only adverse event was mild pneumothorax in a patient from the NVBNA group.
The diagnostic yield for small peripheral pulmonary lesions is increased when VBN is combined with EBUS.
Clinical trial number
Diagnostic bronchoscopy; lung cancer; navigational bronchoscopy; solitary pulmonary nodule; transbronchial biopsy
Sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectin-8 (Siglec-8) promotes the apoptosis of eosinophils and inhibits FcɛRI-dependent mediator release from mast cells. We investigated the genetic association between sequence variants in Siglec-8 and diagnosis of asthma, total levels of serum IgE (tIgE), and diagnosis of eosinophilic esophagitis (EE) in diverse populations. The effect of sequence variants on Siglec-8 glycan ligand-binding activity was also examined. Significant association with asthma was observed for SNP rs36498 (odds ratios (OR), 0.69, P=8.8 × 10−5) among African Americans and for SNP rs10409962 (Ser/Pro) in the Japanese population (OR, 0.69, P=0.019). Supporting this finding, we observed association between SNP rs36498 and current asthma among Brazilian families (P=0.013). Significant association with tIgE was observed for SNP rs6509541 among African Americans (P=0.016), and replicated among the Brazilian families (P=0.02). In contrast, no association was observed with EE in Caucasians. By using a synthetic polymer decorated with 6′-sulfo-sLex, a known Siglec-8 glycan ligand, we did not find any differences between the ligand-binding activity of HEK293 cells stably transfected with the rs10409962 risk allele or the WT allele. However, our association results suggest that the Siglec8 gene may be a susceptibility locus for asthma.
sialic acid-binding immunoglobulin-like lectin-8 (Siglec8); polymorphisms; asthma; eosinophilic esophagitis
COPD; Genetics; Association analysis; Consortium
Catalase is preferentially expressed in bronchiolar and alveolar epithelial cells, and acts as an endogenous antioxidant enzyme in normal lungs. We thus postulated epithelial damage would be associated with a functional deficiency of catalase during the development of lung fibrosis.
The present study evaluates the expression of catalase mRNA and protein in human interstitial pneumonias and in mouse bleomycin-induced lung injury. We examined the degree of bleomycin-induced inflammation and fibrosis in the mice with lowered catalase activity.
In humans, catalase was decreased at the levels of activity, protein content and mRNA expression in fibrotic lungs (n = 12) compared to control lungs (n = 10). Immunohistochemistry revealed a decrease in catalase in bronchiolar epithelium and abnormal re-epithelialization in fibrotic areas. In C57BL/6J mice, catalase activity was suppressed along with downregulation of catalase mRNA in whole lung homogenates after bleomycin administration. In acatalasemic mice, neutrophilic inflammation was prolonged until 14 days, and there was a higher degree of lung fibrosis in association with a higher level of transforming growth factor-β expression and total collagen content following bleomycin treatment compared to wild-type mice.
Taken together, these findings demonstrate diminished catalase expression and activity in human pulmonary fibrosis and suggest the protective role of catalase against bleomycin-induced inflammation and subsequent fibrosis.
Airflow limitation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is caused by a mixture of small airway disease and emphysema, the relative contributions of which may vary among patients. Phenotypes of COPD classified purely based on severity of emphysema are not well defined and may be different from the classic phenotypes of “pink puffers” and “blue bloaters”.
To characterise clinical phenotypes based on severity of emphysema, 274 subjects with COPD were recruited, excluding those with physician‐diagnosed bronchial asthma. For all subjects a detailed interview of disease history and symptoms, quality of life (QOL) measurement, blood sampling, pulmonary function tests before and after inhalation of salbutamol (0.4 mg) and high‐resolution CT scanning were performed.
Severity of emphysema visually evaluated varied widely even among subjects with the same stage of disease. No significant differences were noted among three groups of subjects classified by severity of emphysema in age, smoking history, chronic bronchitis symptoms, blood eosinophil count, serum IgE level or bronchodilator response. However, subjects with severe emphysema had significantly lower body mass index (BMI) and poorer QOL scores, evaluated using St George's Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ), than those with no/mild emphysema (mean (SD) BMI 21.2 (0.5) vs 23.5 (0.3) kg/m2, respectively; SGRQ total score 40 (3) vs 28 (2), respectively; p<0.001 for both). These characteristics held true even if subjects with the same degree of airflow limitation were chosen.
The severity of emphysema varies widely even in patients with the same stage of COPD, and chronic bronchitis symptoms are equally distributed irrespective of emphysema severity. Patients with the phenotype in which emphysema predominates have lower BMI and poorer health‐related QOL.
Mannose receptor (MR) is a member of the C-type lectin receptor family involved in pathogen molecular-pattern recognition and thought to be critical in shaping host immune response. The aim of this study was to investigate potential associations of genetic variants in the MRC1 gene with sarcoidosis.
Nine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), encompassing the MRC1 gene, were genotyped in a total of 605 Japanese consisting of 181 sarcoidosis patients and 424 healthy controls.
Suggestive evidence of association between rs691005 SNP and risk of sarcoidosis was observed independent of sex and age in a recessive model (P = 0.001).
These results suggest that MRC1 is an important candidate gene for sarcoidosis. This is the first study to imply that genetic variants in MRC1, a major member of the C-type lectin, contribute to the development of sarcoidosis.
The time above the MIC (T>MIC) is the pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic (PK/PD) parameter that correlates with the therapeutic efficacy of beta-lactam antibiotics. A prolonged infusion can provide plasma drug concentrations that remain above the MIC for a long period. The objective of this study was to compare the PK/PD parameters in bronchial epithelial lining fluid (ELF) of biapenem given as 0.5-h and 3-h infusions by using bronchoscopic microsampling (BMS). Six healthy adult volunteers received 0.5-h and 3-h infusions of 0.3 g of biapenem with a washout interval. BMS was performed repeatedly from 0.5 to 24 h after biapenem administration in order to determine the pharmacokinetics in bronchial ELF. The subjects received intravenous biapenem with the same regimens again and then underwent bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) at the end of infusion in order to determine the concentration of the drug in alveolar ELF. The percentages (means ± standard deviations) of T>MIC in bronchial ELF at MICs from 0.25 to 4 μg/ml ranged from zero to 34.6% ± 5.2% after the 0.5-h infusion and from 5.1% ± 5.6% to 52.2% ± 17.0% after the 3-h infusion. The percentage of T>MIC in bronchial ELF after the 3-h infusion tended to be higher than that after the 0.5-h infusion. The concentrations of the drug in alveolar ELF after 0.5-h and 3-h infusions were 3.5 ± 1.2 μg/ml and 1.3 ± 0.3 μg/ml, respectively. The present results support the use of prolonged infusions of beta-lactam antibiotics and may provide critical information for successful treatment of lower respiratory tract infections based on PK/PD parameters in bronchial ELF.
XAGE-1b is a cancer/testis antigen that has
been shown to be expressed at a significant frequency and to be
immunogenic in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). In the present
study, we investigated correlations between XAGE-1b expression and
NSCLC patient survival. XAGE-1b expression was examined immunohistochemically
using USO9-13, an anti-XAGE-1b monoclonal antibody, in 121 NSCLCs
(83 adenocarcinomas and 38 other histological types). XAGE-1b expression
was observed in 27 (32.5%) adenocarcinoma specimens. In
the other histological types, positive staining was observed in
only 1 specimen. HLA class I expression in these samples was assessed
previously. XAGE-1b expression had no correlation with overall survival.
However, both XAGE-1b and HLA class I expression correlated with
prolonged survival (P = 0.019).
Moreover, expression of XAGE-1b combined with down-regulated HLA
class I expression correlated with poor survival (P = 0.01).
The density of cancer nest-infiltrating CD8+ T-cells in
tumors expressing both XAGE-1b and HLA class I was higher than that
in other groups. The findings suggest that XAGE-1b and HLA class
I expression elicited a CD8+ T-cell response against minimal
residual disease after surgery and resulted in prolonged survival
of NSCLC patients.
cell lung cancer; XAGE-1; HLA class I antigen; immunohistochemistry; prognosis
Bronchioles are critical zones in cigarette smoke (CS)-induced lung inflammation. However, there have been few studies on the in vivo dynamics of cytokine gene expression in bronchiolar epithelial cells in response to CS.
We subjected C57BL/6J mice to CS (whole body exposure, 90 min/day) for various periods, and used laser capture microdissection to isolate bronchiolar epithelial cells for analysis of mRNA by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction.
We detected enhanced expression of keratinocyte-derived chemokine (KC), macrophage inflammatory protein-2 (MIP-2), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), and interleukin-1β (IL-1β) by bronchial epithelial cells after 10 consecutive days of CS exposure. This was mirrored by increases in neutrophils and KC, MIP-2, TNF-α, and IL-1β proteins in the bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid. The initial inhalation of CS resulted in rapid and robust upregulation of KC and MIP-2 with concomitant DNA oxidation within 1 hr, followed by a return to control values within 3 hrs. In contrast, after CS exposure for 10 days, this initial surge was not observed. As the CS exposure was extended to 4, 12, 18 and 24 weeks, the bronchiolar KC and MIP-2 expression and their levels in BAL fluid were relatively dampened compared to those at 10 days. However, neutrophils in BAL fluid continuously increased up to 24 weeks, suggesting that neutrophil accumulation as a result of long-term CS exposure became independent of KC and MIP-2.
These findings indicate variable patterns of bronchiolar epithelial cytokine expression depending on the duration of CS exposure, and that complex mechanisms govern bronchiolar molecular dynamics in vivo.
Gefitinib, an oral agent of epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor, has a certain efficacy against non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Several predictive factors of gefitinib sensitivity have been well described. However, few studies have investigated the clinical features of gefitinib-responders. In the present study, we analyzed the response and disease progression of primary and metastatic lesions to gefitinib in responders and the results of gefitinib readministration following temporary cessation of gefitinib upon progression of initial gefitinib treatment and other treatments.
We retrospectively evaluated the clinical courses of 27 NSCLC patients who received gefitinib and achieved either a complete or partial response.
The best-response rate and disease-control rate against the initial chemotherapy for the gefitinib-responders were 27.3% and 77.3%, respectively. Favorable efficacy was observed in the primary lesion and metastases to the lung, liver and brain, while there was no obvious effect on bone metastasis. The primary lesion and intrapulmonary metastasis were the sites of major recurrence. Median progression-free survival was 13.8 months, median duration of gefitinib treatment was 17.0 months and median overall survival was 29.2 months. Some of the patients who experienced disease progression after responding to gefitinib were again sensitive to readministration of gefitinib following temporary cessation of gefitinib and other treatments.
Patients may still be expected to have prolonged survival if they once responded to gefitinib and then underwent various subsequent treatments followed by readministration of gefitinib. These findings might provide valuable information for the management of gefitinib-responders.