The effects of temperature change on lung liquid production by in vitro lungs from fetal guinea pigs

J Dev Physiol. 1990 Aug;14(2):109-14.


Lungs from fetal guinea pigs of 58-65 days of gestation were supported in vitro for 3 h, and lung liquid production rates were measured by a dye dilution technique. In 36 control preparations, incubated continuously at 37 degrees C, the average production rate in the first hour was 1.46 +/- 0.23 ml/h per kg body weight; there was no significant change over the following two h. In 36 further preparations the temperature was changed during the middle hour (ABA), with the following % reductions in production rates: at -1 degrees C (relative to 37 degrees C), 68.2 +/- 17.1%; -2 degrees C, 125.5 +/- 30.1% (reabsorption); -3 degrees C, 103.8 +/- 32.8% (reabsorption); -5 degrees C, 82.7 +/- 16.6%, -8 degrees C, 94.7 +/- 1.8 %; +2 degrees C, 100.7 +/- 12.6% (all significant, P less than 0.025-0.005). Slow recoveries followed a return to starting conditions, except after the increase in temperature, 10(-6) M amiloride abolished reabsorption, but not depression, during the maximal effects of temperature reduction (at -2 degrees C, n = 6); amiloride had no effect on control preparations (n = 6). These results suggest that: (a) reductions of 2-3 degrees C, as seen in the delivery room, abolish secretion, but not reabsorption of lung fluid; larger reductions stop both processes; (b) the reabsorptions seen after a fall in temperature depend on Na(+)-transport mechanisms; (c) lung liquid production was sensitive to a rise in temperature, so that fevers might adversely affect lung development, and (d) the fall in temperature at birth may be an important factor in the early reabsorption of lung liquid.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Absorption
  • Amiloride / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Extravascular Lung Water / drug effects
  • Extravascular Lung Water / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Lung / drug effects
  • Lung / embryology*
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Organ Culture Techniques
  • Pregnancy
  • Temperature


  • Amiloride