Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Cause Of Ozone Wheezing And Potential Treatments Found

Date:
February 11, 2009
Source:
NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a cause of airway irritation and wheezing after exposure to ozone, a common urban air pollutant. Using an animal model, the researchers were also able to identify several ways to stop the airways from narrowing. These findings help identify potential new targets for drugs which may eventually help physicians better treat emergency room patients suffering from wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath.

Researchers at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), part of the National Institutes of Health, and Duke University have discovered a cause of airway irritation and wheezing after exposure to ozone, a common urban air pollutant. Using an animal model, the researchers were also able to identify several ways to stop the airways from narrowing.

These findings help identify potential new targets for drugs which may eventually help physicians better treat emergency room patients suffering from wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath.

"We found that it is not the ozone itself that causes the body to wheeze, but the way the lungs respond to ozone," said Stavros Garantziotis, M.D., principal investigator in the NIEHS Laboratory of Respiratory Biology and lead author of the paper published online this week in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

"Animals exposed to ozone produced and released high amounts of a sugar known as hyaluronan," said John Hollingsworth, M.D., a pulmonologist who is an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at Duke University Medical Center and senior author of the paper. "We found hyaluronan to be directly responsible for causing the airways to narrow and become irritated. We believe this may contribute to asthma symptoms in humans as well."

The researchers found several proteins which can mediate the hyaluronan effect and can be used as treatment targets. They were also able to block the airway responsiveness by binding the native hyaluronan away, as well as by administering a slightly modified form of hyaluronan. "Although more research is needed before these findings can be translated to humans, we are optimistic these treatment options could prove beneficial to patients," said Hollingsworth.

"This finding has real-life therapeutic implications," said Garantziotis. The researchers point out there are approximately 4,500 hospital admissions and 900,000 school absences each year attributed to ozone exposure, especially on high-ozone alert days. "We identified several new approaches to the treatment of ozone-induced airway narrowing."

Ozone has been estimated, in an Environmental Protection Agency analysis, to cost the United States $5 billion a year as a result of premature deaths, hospitalizations and school absences. Inhalation of ozone can lead to irritation of the airways and increased wheezing, particularly in children and adults who have asthma and chronic obstructive lung disease. Ozone is formed in the inner atmosphere in the presence of sunlight from pollutants emitted from vehicles and other sources. Exposure occurs when people inhale air containing ozone.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Garantziotis S, Li Z, Potts EN, Kimata K, Zhuo L, Morgan DL, Savani RC, Noble PW, Foster WM, Schwartz DA, Hollingsworth JW. Hyaluronan Mediates Ozone-Induced Airway Hyperresponsiveness in Mice. The Journal of Biological Chemistry, Online January 21, 2009 DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M802400200

Cite This Page:

NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. "New Cause Of Ozone Wheezing And Potential Treatments Found." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110500.htm>.
NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. (2009, February 11). New Cause Of Ozone Wheezing And Potential Treatments Found. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110500.htm
NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. "New Cause Of Ozone Wheezing And Potential Treatments Found." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203110500.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Trees Could Save More Than 850 Lives Each Year

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A national study conducted by the USDA Forest Service found that trees collectively save more than 850 lives on an annual basis. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Google's Next Frontier: The Human Body

Newsy (July 27, 2014) Google is collecting genetic and molecular information to paint a picture of the perfectly healthy human. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
What's To Blame For Worst Ebola Outbreak In History?

What's To Blame For Worst Ebola Outbreak In History?

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A U.S. doctor has tested positive for the deadly Ebola virus, as the worst-ever outbreak continues to grow. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins