The effect of smoking on antioxidant levels in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid

ALATAŞ F., Ergínel S., Özdemír N., ALATAŞ İ. Ö., METİNTAŞ M., Işik R.

Chest, vol.110, 1996 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 110
  • Publication Date: 1996
  • Journal Name: Chest
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, International Pharmaceutical Abstracts, MEDLINE, Public Affairs Index, Veterinary Science Database
  • Eskisehir Osmangazi University Affiliated: Yes


PURPOSE: The lungs of cigarette smokers are subject to an enhanced oxidant burden caused either directly by the oxidants in cigarette smoke or indirectly those produced by polymorphonuclear leukocytes and alveolar macrophages. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of smoking on antioxidant defense system in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. METHODS: 19 current smokers and 7 healthy nonsmoking volunteers were recruited from the outpatient clinic of the Department of Chest Disease in the Hospital of Osmangazi University. The bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) was performed by infusing five sequential 20 ml aliquots and each aliquot was immediately aspirated. The activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and levels of glutathione (GSH) were determined in BAL fluids. Also the epithelial lining fluid (ELF) volume was calculated by using the ratio of urea concentration in BAL fluid to that in serum. RESULTS: Decreases in GSH levels were observed in BAL fluid from smokers versus those from nonsmokers (8.28 ± 0.78, 12.74 ± 1.09 μM respectively, p<0.01). GSH concentrations of the ELF from smokers were also significantly lower than those from nonsmokers (6.87±0.87, 17.08±3.21 μM/ml ELF respectively, p<0.001). The SOD activity of BAL fluid was decreased in smokers as compared to healthy volunteers (60.50 ± 2.10, 71.46 ± 2.79 U/ml respectively, p<0.01). The SOD activity in ELF from smokers was also significantly lower than those from nonsmokers (55.94±8.02, 103.93±24.35 U/ml ELF respectively, p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest that chronic smoke exposure causes the decreased SOD activity and GSH level in BAL fluid from smokers possibly due to the excess generation of reactive oxygen species. CLINICAL IMPLICATION: The oxidant and antioxidant imbalance observed in smokers may be a factor in pathogenesis of oxidant-mediated damage to respiratory airways and alveolar structures.