Macrolides: new therapeutic perspectives in lung diseases

Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2011 Sep;43(9):1241-6. doi: 10.1016/j.biocel.2011.05.009. Epub 2011 May 23.


There is strong clinical evidence for the effectiveness of macrolides in the treatment of a number of chronic airway diseases through their immunomodulatory effects. Recently, new information has been released supporting the view that macrolides may also be beneficial in pathologic situations associated with altered repair of the alveolar structure, such as those observed in interstitial lung diseases and fibrosis. It is proposed that macrolides may contribute to lung regeneration through their actions on several components of the remodeling process. The present review provides new insights on the effects of macrolides on the regenerative response of alveolar epithelium to injury. It also discusses novel findings which suggest that macrolides may contribute to alveolar surfactant homeostasis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Airway Remodeling
  • Animals
  • Autophagy / drug effects
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress
  • Epithelium / pathology
  • Epithelium / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Lung Diseases / physiopathology
  • Macrolides / therapeutic use*
  • Pulmonary Alveoli / pathology
  • Pulmonary Alveoli / physiopathology
  • Pulmonary Surfactants / metabolism
  • Regeneration


  • Macrolides
  • Pulmonary Surfactants