Markers of airway inflammation in primary ciliary dyskinesia studied using exhaled breath condensate

Pediatr Pulmonol. 2006 Jun;41(6):509-14. doi: 10.1002/ppul.20344.


Macroscopically, the airways in primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD) are inflamed and infected, and the eventual result is bronchiectasis. The measurement of noninvasive markers of inflammation in PCD may allow determination of mechanisms of tissue damage, and even allow monitoring of therapy. The aim of this study was to measure in exhaled breath condensate (EBC) of children with PCD the concentrations of the neutrophil chemoattractants leukotriene (LT) B4 and interleukin (IL)-8 and the marker of oxidative stress 8-isoprostane (8-IP), and to try determining whether these markers can be used to assess mechanisms of airway inflammation in these patients. Concentrations of LTB4, IL-8, and 8-IP in the EBC of 23 PCD and 11 age-matched healthy children were measured using an enzyme immunoassay (EIA). The children also performed spirometry and underwent sputum induction, the latter for differential cell count. The concentrations of 8-IP in EBC of children with stable PCD were significantly increased compared to normal controls (median, 7.8 pg/ml vs. 3.1 pg/ml; P = 0.004). There was no difference in the median concentrations of EBC LTB4 between PCD subjects and healthy controls (28 pg/ml vs. 28 pg/ml; P = 0.5). IL-8 levels were below the detection limit of the assay, and were not analyzed further. There was no correlation between concentrations of either 8-IP or LTB(4) in EBC and forced expired volume in 1 sec in PCD children. Sputum induction was successful in 83% of the subjects; the median induced sputum neutrophil count was 69% (interquartile range, 59.3-73.6). No significant correlation was found between sputum neutrophils and either EBC 8-IP or LTB4 concentrations in PCD children. This study showed that oxidative stress, as reflected by increased exhaled 8-IP concentration, is increased in PCD children. The mechanism of airway neutrophilia is unclear, but is unlikely to be related to increased production of LTB4, at least in stable PCD patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Biomarkers / analysis*
  • Breath Tests
  • Cell Count
  • Child
  • Dinoprost / analogs & derivatives
  • Dinoprost / analysis
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / etiology
  • Inflammation / metabolism*
  • Interleukin-8 / analysis
  • Kartagener Syndrome / complications
  • Kartagener Syndrome / metabolism*
  • Leukotriene B4 / analysis
  • Male
  • Neutrophils / cytology
  • Sputum / cytology


  • Biomarkers
  • Interleukin-8
  • Leukotriene B4
  • 8-epi-prostaglandin F2alpha
  • Dinoprost