Heme oxygenase 1 (HO-1) is an inducible enzyme that catalyzes heme to generate bilirubin, ferritin, and carbon monoxide. Because enhanced expression of HO-1 provides an anti-inflammatory effect and confers cytoprotection, we examined whether HO-1 overexpression induced by inoculation of mice with an adenovirus encoding HO-1 (Ad.HO-1) in the lung would prevent pulmonary emphysema induced by porcine pancreatic elastase (PPE). Pretreatment with Ad.HO-1, which upregulated production of HO-1 in the lung, attenuated the PPE-induced increase of neutrophils in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and enlargement of alveoli. It also reduced PPE-induced elevated levels of tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin (IL)-6, and keratinocyte-derived chemokine, and increased the level of anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 in BALF. These results suggest that Ad.HO-1-induced HO-1 overexpression suppressed PPE-induced emphysema by attenuating neutrophilic inflammation via modulating cytokine and chemokine profiles in mouse lungs.