Sensory nerves promote ozone-induced lung inflammation in mice

Regina M. Graham, Mitchell Friedman, Gary W. Hoyle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Genetically manipulated mice exhibiting altered innervation of the airways were used to examine the role of sensory nerves in ozone-induced lung inflammation. Transgenic mice expressing nerve growth factor (NGF) from the lung-specific Clara cell secretory protein (CCSP) promoter exhibit hyperinnervation of the airways by sympathetic and tachykinin-containing sensory nerve fibers. Mice carrying a mutation in the low-affinity NGF receptor (NGFR) gene possess deficits in sensory innervation. CCSP-NGF transgenic mice exhibited a twofold increase in the number of lung lavage neutrophil level whereas NGFR knockout mice exhibited a nearly 50% decrease in neutrophilic inflammation compared with wild-type mice 18 h after ozone inhalation. Treatment with neurokinin receptor antagonists reduced the level of neutrophilic inflammation in both wild-type and CCSP-NGF mice. Examination of lavage fluid cytokine concentrations revealed that 4 h after ozone exposure CCSP-NGF mice produced significantly higher amounts of the chemokine KC than wild-type mice exposed to ozone. The results of this study indicate that sensory nerves are important mediators of ozone-induced inflammation in mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-313
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of respiratory and critical care medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 15 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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