OBJECTIVE:: To test the hypothesis that restoration of antithrombin plasma concentrations attenuates vascular leakage by inhibiting neutrophil activation through syndecan-4 receptor inhibition in an established ovine model of acute lung injury. DESIGN:: Randomized controlled laboratory experiment. SETTING:: University animal research facility. SUBJECTS:: Eighteen chronically instrumented sheep. INTERVENTIONS:: Following combined burn and smoke inhalation injury (40% of total body surface area, third-degree flame burn; 4 × 12 breaths of cold cotton smoke), chronically instrumented sheep were randomly assigned to receive an IV infusion of 6 IU/kg/hr recombinant human antithrombin III or normal saline (n = 6 each) during the 48-hour study period. In addition, six sham animals (not injured, continuous infusion of vehicle) were used to obtain reference values for histological and immunohistochemical analyses. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:: Compared to control animals, recombinant human antithrombin III reduced the number of neutrophils per hour in the pulmonary lymph (p < 0.01 at 24 and 48 hr), alveolar neutrophil infiltration (p = 0.04), and pulmonary myeloperoxidase activity (p = 0.026). Flow cytometric analysis revealed a significant reduction of syndecan-4-positive neutrophils (p = 0.002 vs control at 24 hr). Treatment with recombinant human antithrombin III resulted in a reduction of pulmonary nitrosative stress (p = 0.002), airway obstruction (bronchi: p = 0.001, bronchioli: p = 0.013), parenchymal edema (p = 0.044), and lung bloodless wet-to-dry-weight ratio (p = 0.015). Clinically, recombinant human antithrombin III attenuated the increased pulmonary transvascular fluid flux (12-48 hr: p ≤ 0.001 vs control each) and the deteriorated pulmonary gas exchange (12-48 hr: p < 0.05 vs control each) without increasing the risk of bleeding. CONCLUSIONS:: The present study provides evidence for the interaction between antithrombin and neutrophils in vivo, its pathophysiological role in vascular leakage, and the therapeutic potential of recombinant human antithrombin III in a large animal model of acute lung injury.
- Acute respiratory distress syndrome
- Burn and smoke inhalation injury
- Neutrophil migration
- Syndecan-4 receptor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine