Influence of mast cells on the expression of adhesion molecules on circulating and migrating leukocytes in acute pancreatitis-associated lung injury

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Pancreatitis-associated lung injury is an early-occurring and severe complication, still associated with substantial mortality. A number of inflammatory cells and their products are involved in the initiation and progress of the condition. In the present study, acute pancreatitis (AP) was induced by the intraductal infusion of 5% sodium taurodeoxycholate in the rat. Pulmonary endothelial barrier dysfunction was measured by plasma exudation of radiolabeled albumin. Expression of PECAM-1, ICAM-1, and L-selectin on neutrophils (CD11b(+)) and monocytes/macrophages (CD11b/c(+)), obtained from circulation and lung tissue, was measured I and 6 hours after AP induction (n = 10 rats/time point/group). Plasma levels of histamine and serotonin were determined. The role of mast cells was evaluated by pretreatment with the mast cell stabilizer cromolyn. Intraperitoneal administration of cromolyn downregulated pancreatitis-induced systemic increase of histamine at I hour (513 82 vs. 309 50, p < 0.05). Cromolyn prevented a decreased expression of PECAM-I on circulatory neutrophils and monocytes/macrophages and against an increased expression of ICAM-1 and PECAM-1 on pulmonary neutrophils and monocytes/ macrophages 6 hours after AP induction (about 40% vs. 10%, p < 0.01). The mast cell stabilizer also prevented pancreatitis-induced pulmonary endothelial barrier dysfunction at 6 hours. Thus, our data indicate that mast cells may play a critical role in the activation of leukocytes during the initiation of pancreatitis-associated lung injury by altering phenotypes of adhesion molecules.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Respiratory Medicine and Allergy


  • histamine adhesion molecules, mast cells, cromolyn, permeability
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-264
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Publication categoryResearch