Vitronectin in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid is increased in patients with interstitial lung disease

Am Rev Respir Dis. 1991 Jun;143(6):1369-75. doi: 10.1164/ajrccm/143.6.1369.


Vitronectin, also known as S-protein, is a 75,000-dalton serum glycoprotein that has a variety of functions, including the capacity to interact with the terminal components of the complement cascade, the coagulation system, and cell surfaces. By virtue of its ability to interact with cells, vitronectin is capable of mediating cell-spreading and adhesion and may also influence cell differentiation and cell growth. To investigate the possibility that vitronectin might contribute to the pathogenesis of interstitial lung disease, vitronectin was measured in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid from patients with sarcoidosis, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, and, for comparison, normal volunteers. Vitronectin was detected in lavage fluid and serum of all study subjects. Increased lavage fluid concentrations were found in patients with interstitial lung disease when compared with normal subjects (p less than 0.005), and glucocorticoid-treated patients with interstitial lung disease had lower vitronectin levels than did untreated patients. Furthermore, on SDS-PAGE and Western blot analysis lavage fluid vitronectin comigrated with serum vitronectin, suggesting similar molecular size. Thus, vitronectin is a normal constituent of the epithelial lining fluid, and lavage fluid vitronectin is similar to serum vitronectin. The increase of vitronectin concentrations in the epithelial lining fluid of patients with interstitial lung disease suggests that vitronectin may contribute to the pathogenesis of interstitial lung disease.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Blood Proteins / metabolism
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Glycoproteins / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osmolar Concentration
  • Prednisone / therapeutic use
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis / drug therapy
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis / metabolism*
  • Sarcoidosis / drug therapy
  • Sarcoidosis / metabolism
  • Vitronectin


  • Blood Proteins
  • Glycoproteins
  • Vitronectin
  • Prednisone