High-density lipoproteins potentiate α1-antitrypsin therapy in elastase-induced pulmonary emphysema

Juan-Antonio Moreno, Almudena Ortega-Gomez, Alfonso Rubio-Navarro, Liliane Louedec, Benoit Ho-Tin-Noé, Giuseppina Caligiuri, Antonino Nicoletti, Angelique Levoye, Laurent Plantier, Olivier Meilhac
American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology 2014, 51 (4): 536-49
Several studies report that high-density lipoproteins (HDLs) can carry α1-antitrypsin (AAT; an elastase inhibitor). We aimed to determine whether injection of exogenous HDL, enriched or not in AAT, may have protective effects against pulmonary emphysema. After tracheal instillation of saline or elastase, mice were randomly treated intravenously with saline, human plasma HDL (75 mg apolipoprotein A1/kg), HDL-AAT (75 mg apolipoprotein A1-3.75 mg AAT/kg), or AAT alone (3.75 mg/kg) at 2, 24, 48, and 72 hours. We have shown that HDL-AAT reached the lung and prevented the development of pulmonary emphysema by 59.3% at 3 weeks (alveoli mean chord length, 22.9 ± 2.8 μm versus 30.7 ± 4.5 μm; P < 0.001), whereas injection of HDL or AAT alone only showed a moderate, nonsignificant protective effect (28.2 ± 4.2 μm versus 30.7 ± 5 μm [P = 0.23] and 27.3 ± 5.66 μm versus 30.71 ± 4.96 μm [P = 0.18], respectively). Indeed, protection by HDL-AAT was significantly higher than that observed with HDL or AAT (P = 0.006 and P = 0.048, respectively). This protective effect was associated (at 6, 24, and 72 h) with: (1) a reduction in neutrophil and macrophage number in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid; (2) decreased concentrations of IL-6, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, and TNF-α in both bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and plasma; (3) a reduction in matrix metalloproteinase-2 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 activities; and (4) a reduction in the degradation of fibronectin, a marker of tissue damage. In addition, HDL-AAT reduced acute cigarette smoke-induced inflammatory response. Intravenous HDL-AAT treatment afforded a better protection against elastase-induced pulmonary emphysema than AAT alone, and may represent a significant development for the management of emphysema associated with AAT deficiency.

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