Oxidative stress and pulmonary inflammation: pharmacological intervention with antioxidants

Pharmacol Res. 1999 Nov;40(5):393-404. doi: 10.1006/phrs.1999.0549.


Reactive oxygen and nitrogen species are generated by several inflammatory and structural cells of the airways. These oxidant species may have important effects on different lung cells as regulators of signal transduction, activators of key transcription factors, and modulators of gene expression and apoptosis. Thus, an increased oxidative stress accompanied by reduced endogenous antioxidant defences may have a role in the pathogenesis of a number of inflammatory pulmonary diseases including asthma. Although antioxidant drugs could play a useful role in the therapy of inflammatory lung diseases, their clinical impact is relatively modest at present. Rigorous clinical investigation with the existing antioxidants and development of new drugs with improved lung bioavailability are necessary in the future.pc 1999 Academic Press@p$hr

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Lung / drug effects
  • Lung / physiopathology
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Oxidative Stress / physiology*
  • Pneumonia / drug therapy*
  • Pneumonia / physiopathology*


  • Antioxidants