Purpose: Mechanical ventilation is a well-established therapy for patients with acute respiratory failure. However, up to 35% of mortality in acute respiratory distress syndrome may be attributed to ventilation-induced lung injury (VILI). We previously demonstrated the efficacy of the synthetic tripeptide feG for preventing and ameliorating acute pancreatitis-associated lung injury. However, as the mechanisms of induction of injury during mechanical ventilation may differ, we aimed to investigate the effect of feG in a rodent model of VILI, with or without secondary challenge, as a preventative treatment when administered before injury (prophylactic), or as a therapeutic treatment administered following initiation of injury (therapeutic).
Methods: Lung injury was assessed following prophylactic or therapeutic intratracheal feG administration in a rodent model of ventilation-induced lung injury, with or without secondary intratracheal lipopolysaccharide challenge.
Results: Prophylactic feG administration resulted in significant improvements in arterial blood oxygenation and respiratory mechanics, and decreased lung oedema, bronchoalveolar lavage protein concentration, histological tissue injury scores, blood vessel activation, bronchoalveolar lavage cell infiltration and lung myeloperoxidase activity in VILI, both with and without lipopolysaccharide. Therapeutic feG administration similarly ameliorated the severity of tissue damage and encouraged the resolution of injury. feG associated decreases in endothelial adhesion molecules may indicate a mechanism for these effects.
Conclusions: This study supports the potential for feG as a pharmacological agent in the prevention or treatment of lung injury associated with mechanical ventilation.
Keywords: Acute lung injury; Adhesion molecules; Leukocytes; Mechanical ventilation; Rat.