Cigarette smoke impairs elastin resynthesis in lungs of hamsters with elastase-induced emphysema

M. Osman, J. O. Cantor, S. Roffman, S. Keller, G. M. Turino, I. Mandl

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51 Scopus citations


The severity of pulmonary emphysema can be affected by exposure to cigarette smoke in several ways. Inactivation of alpha-1-antitrypsin and recruitment of leukocytes to lung airways shifts the protease-antiprotease balance towards increased elastolytic activity. The present study demonstrates an additional effect of cigarette smoke inhalation and retardation of the repair process and of the neosynthesis of cross-linked elastin. Hamsters with elastase-induced emphysema, exposed to cigarette smoke for 1 wk immediately after elastase administration, showed a 40% reduction of 14C-lysine incorporation into the elastin-specific cross-links, desmosine, and isodesmosine. Concomitantly, there was a decrease in the level of lung lysyl oxidase to that observed in uninjured control animals, in sharp contrast to the sevenfold increase in lysyl oxidase activity in hamsters with elastase-induced emphysema recovering under atmospheric conditions. These findings suggest that impairment of the production of lysyl oxidase and the resynthesis of cross-linked elastin by smoke inhalation exacerbates alveolar destruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)640-643
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Review of Respiratory Disease
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1985


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