Increased serum TRAIL and DR5 levels correlated with lung function and inflammation in stable COPD patients

Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis. 2015 Nov 6:10:2405-12. doi: 10.2147/COPD.S92260. eCollection 2015.


Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is associated with abnormal systemic inflammation, and apoptosis is one of the pathogenic mechanisms of COPD. Several studies have suggested that tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) and its receptors were not only involved in diseases associated with apoptosis but also in inflammatory diseases. However, limited data about the possible relationship between COPD and TRAIL/TRAIL-receptors are available.

Objective: To evaluate the potential relationship between TRAIL/TRAIL-receptors and COPD.

Methods: Serum levels of TRAIL, decoy receptor 5 (DR5), C-reactive protein, and tumor necrosis factor-α were analyzed using multiplex enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits. Then, serum levels of TRAIL and DR5 in 57 COPD patients with 35 healthy controls were compared and correlated with lung function and systemic inflammation.

Results: Mean levels of serum TRAIL and DR5 were significantly higher in COPD patients than those in controls (50.17±17.70 versus 42.09±15.49 pg/mL, P=0.029; 48.15±22.88 versus 38.94±10.95 pg/mL, P=0.032, respectively). Serum levels of TRAIL and DR5 correlated inversely with forced expiratory volume in 1 second % predicted, an index of lung function in COPD (r=-0.354, P=0.007 for TRAIL; r=-0.394, P=0.002 for DR5) in all participants (r=-0.291, P=0.005 for TRAIL; r=-0.315, P=0.002 for DR5), while DR5 correlated positively with C-reactive protein (r=0.240, P=0.021 for total subjects) and TRAIL correlated positively with tumor necrosis factor-α (r=0.371, P=0.005 for COPD; r=0.349, P=0.001 for total subjects).

Conclusion: Our results suggested that circulating TRAIL and DR5 increased in COPD patients and were associated with lung function and systemic inflammation in COPD. Future studies are needed to verify whether and how TRAIL and its receptors play roles in COPD.

Keywords: apoptosis; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; decoy receptor 5; inflammation; tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / blood*
  • Inflammation / diagnosis
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • Inflammation / physiopathology
  • Inflammation Mediators / blood*
  • Lung / immunology
  • Lung / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / blood*
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / diagnosis
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / immunology
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / physiopathology
  • Receptors, TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand / blood*
  • Spirometry
  • TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand / blood*
  • Vital Capacity


  • Biomarkers
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Receptors, TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • TNF-Related Apoptosis-Inducing Ligand
  • TNFRSF10B protein, human
  • TNFSF10 protein, human