Protective effects of a hydrogen-rich solution during cold ischemia in rat lung transplantation

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2020 May;159(5):2110-2118. doi: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2019.09.175. Epub 2019 Oct 30.


Background: Molecular hydrogen can reduce the oxidative stress of ischemia-reperfusion injury in various organs for transplantation and potentially improve survival rates in recipients. This study aimed to evaluate the protective effects of a hydrogen-rich preservation solution against ischemia-reperfusion injury after cold ischemia in rat lung transplantation.

Methods: Lewis rats were divided into a nontransplant group (n = 3), minimum-ischemia group (n = 3), cold ischemia group (n = 6), and cold ischemia with hydrogen-rich (more than 1.0 ppm) preservation solution group (n = 6). The rats in the nontransplant group underwent simple thoracotomy, and the rats in the remaining 3 groups underwent orthotopic left lung transplantation. The ischemic time was <30 minutes in the minimum-ischemia group and 6 hours in the cold ischemia groups. After 2-hour reperfusion, we evaluated arterial blood gas levels, pulmonary function, lung wet-to-dry weight ratio, and histologic features of the lung tissue. The expression of proinflammatory cytokines was measured using quantitative polymerase chain reaction assays, and 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine levels were evaluated using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.

Results: When compared with the nontransplant and minimum-ischemia groups, the cold ischemia group had lower dynamic compliance, lower oxygenation levels, and higher wet-to-dry weight ratios. However, these variables were significantly improved in the cold ischemia with hydrogen-rich preservation solution group. This group also had fewer signs of perivascular edema, lower interleukin-1β messenger RNA expression, and lower 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine levels than the cold ischemia group.

Conclusions: The use of a hydrogen-rich preservation solution attenuates ischemia-reperfusion injury in rat lungs during cold ischemia through antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.

Keywords: hydrogen-rich solution; ischemia-reperfusion injury; lung transplantation.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cold Ischemia / methods*
  • Cytokines / analysis
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Hydrogen / pharmacology*
  • Lung / drug effects
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Lung Transplantation / methods*
  • Male
  • Organ Preservation Solutions / pharmacology*
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Lew
  • Reperfusion Injury / metabolism
  • Reperfusion Injury / prevention & control


  • Cytokines
  • Organ Preservation Solutions
  • Protective Agents
  • Hydrogen