Acute exposure to cigarette smoke induces airway hyperresponsiveness without airway inflammation in guinea pigs. Dose-response characteristics

Am Rev Respir Dis. 1990 Jul;142(1):177-83. doi: 10.1164/ajrccm/142.1.177.


We examined whether acute exposure to a low dose of cigarette smoke causes an increase in airway responsiveness in guinea pigs and whether the changes in airway responsiveness are accompanied by increased vascular permeability or neutrophil influx in the trachea. Animals were divided into four groups: groups exposed to 5, 10, or 20 puffs of cigarette smoke and a control group. Airway responsiveness was assessed by measuring specific airway resistance (SRaw) as a function of increasing concentration of inhaled methacholine (Mch) aerosol immediately, 5 h, and 24 h after exposure. In parallel studies, tracheal vascular permeability was quantified by measuring the tracheal extravasation of intravenously administered Evans blue dye, and neutrophil influx into the tracheal mucosa was quantified by counting cells within whole mounts of tracheas that were stained with Giemsa. Exposure to 5 puffs of cigarette smoke caused no changes in airway responsiveness. Exposure to 10 puffs induced airway hyperresponsiveness only immediately after exposure. Exposure to 20 puffs induced airway hyperresponsiveness not only immediately but also 5 h after exposure. There was a significant correlation between the dose (puffs) of cigarette smoke and increase in airway responsiveness immediately after exposure (r = 0.77; p less than 0.001). The tracheal extravasation of intravenously administered Evans blue dye and the number of neutrophils in the tracheal mucosa did not differ significantly from the corresponding control values at any time or in any exposed group. Furthermore, none of these changes was observed in the airways distal to the trachea of any animal immediately after exposure to 20 puffs of cigarette smoke.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Airway Resistance / physiology
  • Animals
  • Bronchi / pathology
  • Capillary Permeability / physiology
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Evans Blue
  • Extravasation of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Materials
  • Female
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Neutrophils / cytology
  • Plants, Toxic*
  • Smoke / adverse effects*
  • Tobacco*
  • Trachea / pathology
  • Trachea / physiopathology*


  • Smoke
  • Evans Blue