Effect of exposure to ceramic fibres and cigarette smoke on antioxidant status of the lung.

OBJECTIVES: The programmes of asbestos replacement brought the need to use other fibres for insulation or reinforcement of material. The aim of the presented study was to follow the effect of refractory ceramic fibres (RCF3) alone or in combination with cigarette smoke (CS) on antioxidant status of the lung in experiment on animals. As free radicals are supposed to play a role in pathogenesis of lung diseases and the toxicity of particles has been associated with production of reactive oxygen species, the antioxidant status may serve as marker of lung injury. Our hypothesis was that the effect of combined exposure to RCF3 and CS will be additive or synergic.

DESIGN: Scheme of experiment: Wistar rats were randomly divided into 4 groups per 6 animals: control, intratracheal exposure to 4 mg of RCF3, inhalatory exposure to mainstream of cigarette smoke from 8 standard research 1R1 cigarettes per day, and both intratracheal exposure to RCF3 and inhalatory to CS. The exposure lasted 6 months, the inhalatory exposure was performed 5 times per week. After finishing the exposure bronchoalveolar lavage of lungs was performed and ascorbic acid, superoxide dismutase, glutathione and glutathione peroxidase were determined in lung tissue and cell free fraction of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF).

RESULTS: The results showed that the most sensitive indicator of changes in antioxidant status was glutathione, which was changed in all groups both in BALF and lung tissue homogenate.