Pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia

Respiration. 2010;79(5):425-36. doi: 10.1159/000242497. Epub 2009 Sep 25.


Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) refers to a heterogeneous group of lung disorders in infants that is commonly associated with prematurity and surfactant deficiency. BPD results from the complex interplay between impairments in the premature lung such as surfactant deficiency, perinatal insults such as infection, and damage resulting from supportive care of the infant due to barotrauma or volutrauma from mechanical ventilation and oxygen toxicity from supplemental oxygen administration. These factors result in chronic inflammation in the infant lung with recurring cycles of lung damage and repair that may impair alveolarization and vascularization in the developing lungs. As our insight in how to treat BPD improves along with the ability to do so with developing technology and therapies, the underlying pathogenesis will also change. The term 'new' BPD is now commonly used, to describe the changes seen in the post-surfactant era. This discussion reviews the pathogenesis of BPD according to the current medical literature.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Insufficiency / physiopathology
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use
  • Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia / physiopathology*
  • Ductus Arteriosus, Patent / physiopathology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pulmonary / physiopathology
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature
  • Inflammation / physiopathology
  • Lung / embryology
  • Pulmonary Surfactants / metabolism
  • Respiration, Artificial / adverse effects
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / physiopathology


  • Antioxidants
  • Pulmonary Surfactants