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Lung inflammation following a single exposure to swine barn air

Author(s): Gamage Lakshman | Charavaryamath Chandrashekhar | Swift Trisha | Singh Baljit

Journal: Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology
ISSN 1745-6673

Volume: 2;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 18;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Abstract Background Exposure to swine barn air is an occupational hazard. Barn workers following an eight-hour work shift develop many signs of lung dysfunction including lung inflammation. However, the in situ cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for lung dysfunction induced following exposure to the barn air remain largely unknown. Specifically, the recruitment and role of pulmonary intravascular monocytes/macrophages (PIMMs), which increase host susceptibility for acute lung inflammation, remain unknown in barn air induced lung inflammation. We hypothesized that barn exposure induces recruitment of PIMMs and increases susceptibility for acute lung inflammation with a secondary challenge. Methods Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed either to the barn or ambient air for eight hours and were euthanized at various time intervals to collect blood, broncho-alveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and lung tissue. Subsequently, following an eight hour barn or ambient air exposure, rats were challenged either with Escherichia coli (E. coli) lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or saline and euthanized 6 hours post-LPS or saline treatment. We used ANOVA (P < 0.05 means significant) to compare group differences. Results An eight-hour exposure to barn air induced acute lung inflammation with recruitment of granulocytes and PIMMs. Granulocyte and PIMM numbers peaked at one and 48 hour post-exposure, respectively. Secondary challenge with E. coli LPS at 48 hour following barn exposure resulted in intense lung inflammation, greater numbers of granulocytes, increased number of cells positive for TNF-α and decreased amounts of TGF-β2 in lung tissues. We also localized TNF-α, IL-1β and TGF-β2 in PIMMs. Conclusion A single exposure to barn air induces lung inflammation with recruitment of PIMMs and granulocytes. Recruited PIMMs may be linked to more robust lung inflammation in barn-exposed rats exposed to LPS. These data may have implications of workers exposed to the barn air who may encounter secondary microbial challenge.
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