Polyethylene glycol-conjugated superoxide dismutase in unilateral lung injury due to re-expansion (re-oxygenation)

R. M. Jackson, C. F. Veal, J. S. Beckman, A. L. Brannen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


This study evaluated the effects of polyethylene glycol-conjugated superoxide dismutase (PEG-SOD) in re-expansion pulmonary edema, a unilateral lung injury due in part to re-oxygenation of hypoxic, collapsed lung tissue, The hypothesis underlying this investigation was that extracellular superoxide contributed to the lung inflammation in this model, and that PEG-SOD could be used to test for extra-cellular superoxide involvement. The right lungs of 2-3 kg rabbits were collapsed for seven days by intrapleural air injections. Immediately prior to lung re-expansion, rabbits received intravenously 10,000 units/kg PEG-SOD (n = 6) or an equal volume of H2O2-inactivated PEG-SOD (n = 6). Inactive PEG-SOD pretreated rabbits had a marked increase in re-expanded lungs' lavage albumin concentration (right 1653 ± 230 μg/ml, left 404 ± 160 μg/ml; p<01). Active PEG-SOD did not inhibit this permeability increase (right 1744 ± 242 μg/ml, left 180 ± 53 μg/ml; p<.01). However, active PEG-SOD significantly decreased both total number and percent neutrophils in alveolar lavage (right 24.8 ± 9.4%, left 4.2 ± 0.8%; p<.05) compared to inactive PEG-SOD pretreated rabbits (right 52.8 ± 5.8%, left 8.7 ± 2.4%; p < .01). Pretreatment with active PEG-SOD significantly increased lung tissue (20.4 ± 1.5 units/mg DNA), blood (400 ± 8 units/ml and right lung lavage (30.0 ± 3.1 units/ml) SOD activities compared to those from inactive PEG-SOD pretreated rabbits (respectively: 16.0 ± 1.0 units/mg DNA, 335 ± 14 units/ml and 10.8 ± 1.3 units/ml; p < .05 for each comparison). These data indicate that PEG-SOD pretreatment effectively: (1) increased lung tissue SOD activity; (2) decreased by >50% the accumulation of neutrophils within the re-expanded lung; but (3) did not decrease lung permeability following re-expansion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22-28
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of the Medical Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Pulmonary edema
  • Re-expansion edema
  • Re-oxygenation
  • Superoxide dismutase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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