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      A Pharmacologic Approach to Acquired Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator Dysfunction in Smoking Related Lung Disease

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          Abstract

          Background

          Mucus stasis in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a significant contributor to morbidity and mortality. Potentiators of cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) activity pharmacologically enhance CFTR function; ivacaftor is one such agent approved to treat CF patients with the G551D-CFTR gating mutation. CFTR potentiators may also be useful for other diseases of mucus stasis, including COPD.

          Methods and Findings

          In primary human bronchial epithelial cells, exposure to cigarette smoke extract diminished CFTR-mediated anion transport (65.8±0.2% of control, P<0.005) and mucociliary transport (0.17±0.05 µm/sec vs. 2.4±0.47 µm/sec control, P<0.05) by reducing airway surface liquid depth (7.3±0.6 µm vs. 13.0±0.6 µm control, P<0.005) and augmenting mucus expression (by 64%, P<0.05) without altering transepithelial resistance. Smokers with or without COPD had reduced CFTR activity measured by nasal potential difference compared to age-matched non-smokers (−6.3±1.4 and −8.0±2.0 mV, respectively vs. −15.2±2.7 mV control, each P<0.005, n = 12–14/group); this CFTR decrement was associated with symptoms of chronic bronchitis as measured by the Breathlessness Cough and Sputum Score (r = 0.30, P<0.05) despite controlling for smoking (r = 0.31, P<0.05). Ivacaftor activated CFTR-dependent chloride transport in non-CF epithelia and ameliorated the functional CFTR defect induced by smoke to 185±36% of non-CF control (P<0.05), thereby increasing airway surface liquid (from 7.3±0.6 µm to 10.1±0.4 µm, P<0.005) and mucociliary transport (from 0.27±0.11 µm/s to 2.7±0.28 µm/s, P<0.005).

          Conclusions

          Cigarette smoking reduces CFTR activity and is causally related to reduced mucus transport in smokers due to inhibition of CFTR dependent fluid transport. These effects are reversible by the CFTR potentiator ivacaftor, representing a potential therapeutic strategy to augment mucociliary clearance in patients with smoking related lung disease.

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          Most cited references 36

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          Airway mucus function and dysfunction.

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            Effectiveness of PTC124 treatment of cystic fibrosis caused by nonsense mutations: a prospective phase II trial.

            In about 10% of patients worldwide and more than 50% of patients in Israel, cystic fibrosis results from nonsense mutations (premature stop codons) in the messenger RNA (mRNA) for the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR). PTC124 is an orally bioavailable small molecule that is designed to induce ribosomes to selectively read through premature stop codons during mRNA translation, to produce functional CFTR. This phase II prospective trial recruited adults with cystic fibrosis who had at least one nonsense mutation in the CFTR gene. Patients were assessed in two 28-day cycles. During the first cycle, patients received PTC124 at 16 mg/kg per day in three doses every day for 14 days, followed by 14 days without treatment; in the second cycle, patients received 40 mg/kg of PTC124 in three doses every day for 14 days, followed by 14 days without treatment. The primary outcome had three components: change in CFTR-mediated total chloride transport; proportion of patients who responded to treatment; and normalisation of chloride transport, as assessed by transepithelial nasal potential difference (PD) at baseline, at the end of each 14-day treatment course, and after 14 days without treatment. The trial was registered with who.int/ictrp, and with clinicaltrials.gov, number NCT00237380. Transepithelial nasal PD was evaluated in 23 patients in the first cycle and in 21 patients in the second cycle. Mean total chloride transport increased in the first treatment phase, with a change of -7.1 (SD 7.0) mV (p<0.0001), and in the second, with a change of -3.7 (SD 7.3) mV (p=0.032). We recorded a response in total chloride transport (defined as a change in nasal PD of -5 mV or more) in 16 of the 23 patients in the first cycle's treatment phase (p<0.0001) and in eight of the 21 patients in the second cycle (p<0.0001). Total chloride transport entered the normal range for 13 of 23 patients in the first cycle's treatment phase (p=0.0003) and for nine of 21 in the second cycle (p=0.02). Two patients given PTC124 had constipation without intestinal obstruction, and four had mild dysuria. No drug-related serious adverse events were recorded. In patients with cystic fibrosis who have a premature stop codon in the CFTR gene, oral administration of PTC124 to suppress nonsense mutations reduces the epithelial electrophysiological abnormalities caused by CFTR dysfunction.
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              Coordinated clearance of periciliary liquid and mucus from airway surfaces.

              Airway surface liquid is comprised of mucus and an underlying, watery periciliary liquid (PCL). In contrast to the well-described axial transport of mucus along airway surfaces via ciliary action, theoretical analyses predict that the PCL is nearly stationary. Conventional and confocal microscopy of fluorescent microspheres and photoactivated fluorescent dyes were used with well-differentiated human tracheobronchial epithelial cell cultures exhibiting spontaneous, radial mucociliary transport to study the movements of mucus and PCL. These studies showed that the entire PCL is transported at approximately the same rate as mucus, 39.2+/-4.7 and 39.8+/-4.2 micrometer/sec, respectively. Removing the mucus layer reduced PCL transport by > 80%, to 4.8+/-0.6 micrometer/sec, a value close to that predicted from theoretical analyses of the ciliary beat cycle. Hence, the rapid movement of PCL is dependent upon the transport of mucus. Mucus-dependent PCL transport was spatially uniform and exceeded the rate expected for pure frictional coupling with the overlying mucus layer; hence, ciliary mixing most likely accelerates the diffusion of momentum from mucus into the PCL. The cephalad movement of PCL along airway epithelial surfaces makes this mucus-driven transport an important component of salt and water physiology in the lung in health and disease.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: Editor
                Journal
                PLoS One
                PLoS ONE
                plos
                plosone
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, USA )
                1932-6203
                2012
                29 June 2012
                : 7
                : 6
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                [2 ]Department of Pediatrics, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                [3 ]Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                [4 ]Department of Pathology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                [5 ]UAB Lung Health Center, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                [6 ]Cystic Fibrosis Research Center, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama, United States of America
                Abramson Research Center, United States of America
                Author notes

                Conceived and designed the experiments: PAS EJS MTD SMR. Performed the experiments: PAS SS AW CC LPT KB EL SVR YL MM SBP WG MTD SMR. Analyzed the data: PAS SS CC EL SVR YL SBP WG EJS MTD SMR LPT. Wrote the paper: PAS MTD SMR. Supervised the project: MTD SMR.

                Article
                PONE-D-12-08515
                10.1371/journal.pone.0039809
                3387224
                22768130
                Sloane et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
                Page count
                Pages: 13
                Categories
                Research Article
                Biology
                Genetics
                Human Genetics
                Autosomal Recessive
                Cystic Fibrosis
                Medicine
                Anatomy and Physiology
                Respiratory System
                Respiratory Physiology
                Electrophysiology
                Clinical Genetics
                Autosomal Recessive
                Cystic Fibrosis
                Drugs and Devices
                Drug Research and Development
                Drug Discovery
                Clinical Pharmacology
                Pulmonology
                Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases
                Pediatric Pulmonology
                Smoking Related Disorders

                Uncategorized

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