The role of complement in cigarette smoke-induced chemotactic activity of lung fluids

Am Rev Respir Dis. 1986 Mar;133(3):478-81. doi: 10.1164/arrd.1986.133.3.478.


To help explain increased recruitment of leukocytes to smokers' lungs, we examined the possibility that the smoke-induced chemotactic activity in lung fluids may be partly complement-dependent. Acute inhalation exposure of rats to smoke from 2R1 Kentucky Reference cigarettes caused an increase in the leukocyte chemotactic activity of their lung secretions (collected by bronchoalveolar lavage 1 h after exposure). Prior depletion of circulating complement, by intravenous administration of purified cobra venom factor 24 h beforehand, prevented the smoke-induced rise in lavage fluid chemotactic activity. Crossed immunoelectrophoretic analysis of lavage C3 from smoke-exposed animals demonstrated a modified form of the molecule with increased electrophoretic (anodal) mobility. When 2 strains of mice, C5-deficient DBA/2 and C5-sufficient BALB/c, were acutely exposed to cigarette smoke, only the C5-sufficient animals (BALB/c) had increased neutrophil chemotactic activity in their lung fluids 1 h after exposure. These results show that the increased chemotactic activity in lung fluids of laboratory animals immediately after acute cigarette smoke exposure is complement-dependent.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Fluids / analysis
  • Body Fluids / physiology*
  • Chemotactic Factors / analysis
  • Chemotactic Factors / pharmacology
  • Chemotaxis, Leukocyte*
  • Complement C3 / analysis
  • Complement C5 / deficiency
  • Complement Pathway, Alternative / drug effects
  • Complement System Proteins / physiology*
  • Elapid Venoms / pharmacology
  • Inflammation
  • Lung / physiology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred DBA
  • Mice, Mutant Strains
  • Neutrophils
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Smoking*
  • Therapeutic Irrigation


  • Chemotactic Factors
  • Complement C3
  • Complement C5
  • Elapid Venoms
  • cobra venom factor
  • Complement System Proteins