Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Review
. 2018 May 21;15(5):1033.
doi: 10.3390/ijerph15051033.

Tobacco Smoke Induces and Alters Immune Responses in the Lung Triggering Inflammation, Allergy, Asthma and Other Lung Diseases: A Mechanistic Review

Affiliations
Free PMC article
Review

Tobacco Smoke Induces and Alters Immune Responses in the Lung Triggering Inflammation, Allergy, Asthma and Other Lung Diseases: A Mechanistic Review

Agnieszka Strzelak et al. Int J Environ Res Public Health. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Many studies have been undertaken to reveal how tobacco smoke skews immune responses contributing to the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other lung diseases. Recently, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) has been linked with asthma and allergic diseases in children. This review presents the most actual knowledge on exact molecular mechanisms responsible for the skewed inflammatory profile that aggravates inflammation, promotes infections, induces tissue damage, and may promote the development of allergy in individuals exposed to ETS. We demonstrate how the imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants resulting from exposure to tobacco smoke leads to oxidative stress, increased mucosal inflammation, and increased expression of inflammatory cytokines (such as interleukin (IL)-8, IL-6 and tumor necrosis factor α ([TNF]-α). Direct cellular effects of ETS on epithelial cells results in increased permeability, mucus overproduction, impaired mucociliary clearance, increased release of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, enhanced recruitment of macrophages and neutrophils and disturbed lymphocyte balance towards Th2. The plethora of presented phenomena fully justifies a restrictive policy aiming at limiting the domestic and public exposure to ETS.

Keywords: airway; allergy; asthma; atopy; children; cigarette; immunity; lung; smoke; tobacco.

Conflict of interest statement

Authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Cigarette smoke exposure-associated alternations in local and systemic immunity promoting inflammation and allergy development.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Effects of cigarette smoke exposure during prenatal life and early childhood.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Local immune responses to cigarette smoke in the lung tissue.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 23 articles

See all "Cited by" articles

References

    1. WHO . WHO Global Report on Trends in Prevalence of Tobacco Smoking. WHO; Geneva, Switzerland: 2015.
    1. Sopori M. Effects of cigarette smoke on the immune system. Nat. Rev. Immunol. 2002;2:372–377. doi: 10.1038/nri803. - DOI - PubMed
    1. Stampfli M.R., Anderson G.P. How cigarette smoke skews immune responses to promote infection, lung disease and cancer. Nat. Rev. Immunol. 2009;9:377–384. doi: 10.1038/nri2530. - DOI - PubMed
    1. Nuorti J.P., Butler J.C., Farley M.M., Harrison L.H., McGeer A., Kolczak M.S., Breiman R.F. Cigarette smoking and invasive pneumococcal disease. Active Bacterial Core Surveillance Team. N. Engl. J. Med. 2000;342:681–689. doi: 10.1056/NEJM200003093421002. - DOI - PubMed
    1. World Health Organization . In: Gender, Women, and the Tobacco Epidemic. Samet J.M., Yoon S.-Y., editors. World Health Organization; Geneva, Switzerland: 2010. p. 249.

Publication types

Feedback