We determined whether platelet-activating factor (PAF) plays a role in allergen-induced airway responses by studying the effects of a selective PAF antagonist WEB-2086 on antigen-induced early and late airway responses in allergic sheep. In seven sheep, inhaled Ascaris suum produced significant early (282%) and late (176%) increases in specific lung resistance (sRL). WEB-2086 (1 mg/kg iv) given 20 min before antigen challenge did not affect the early response, but the peak late increase in sRL was only 37% over base line (P < 0.05 vs. control). To study the mechanism by which PAF contributes to antigen-induced responses, we evaluated the effects of pharmacological probes on PAF-induced bronchoconstriction. Inhaled PAF (dose range 75-700 μg) caused reproducible (r = 0.781, P < 0.05) increases in sRL in eight sheep. The PAF-induced bronchoconstriction was blocked by WEB-2086 (1 mg/kg iv) and by the leukotriene antagonist FPL-55712 (30 mg by aerosol); however, neither the cyclooxygenase blocker indomethacin (2 mg/kg iv) nor the histamine H1-antagonist chlorpheniramine (2 mg/kg iv) blocked the PAF response. WEB-2086, however, did not block bronchoconstriction induced by aerosol leukotriene D4, indicating that PAF acts indirectly through leukotrienes. Finally, we determined whether PAF could induce late airway responses. Inhaled PAF produced an immediate increase in sRL in all seven sheep tested, but late airway responses were observed in only three of the seven sheep. Our observations show that PAF may play a role in allergen-induced late responses in allergic sheep and that a large component of the PAF-induced response is mediated via spasmogenic leukotrienes. These results support the possibility of sequential mediator activation in vivo.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)