Short-term and long-term effects of serial bronchoalveolar lavages in a nonhuman primate model

Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 1994 Jul;150(1):153-8. doi: 10.1164/ajrccm.150.1.8025742.


Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) has gained widespread use as a tool for investigating human lung diseases. In certain cases, it can be useful to obtain BAL material in a serial manner. There is convincing evidence from experimental and clinical studies that BAL can cause influx of neutrophils into the bronchoalveolar space. However, conflicting data have been reported on whether this side effect of BAL also affects previously nonlavaged lung areas. In addition, there is little information available on whether multiple repetitive BAL procedures cause damage to lung tissue. To reexamine the short-term effects of serial BAL procedures, the left lung of 10 cynomolgus monkeys was lavaged with five 20-ml aliquots of saline four times at 24-h intervals (Group A). 72 h after the initial BAL, the right lung was lavaged as a control. The percentage of neutrophils increased significantly (p < 0.05), with the greatest effect seen at 48 h (30.7 +/- 5.8 versus 0.8 +/- 0.3%, mean +/- SEM). No significant changes were observed in the control BAL of the right lung at 72 h. A multidisciplinary approach was used to assess the long-term effects of multiple BAL procedures. BAL was performed 14 times over 26 mo at 2-mo intervals (Group B, n = 5). The right lung was lavaged as a control 25 mo after the initial BAL. In addition to standard cellular BAL parameters, the concentrations of fibronectin, procollagen III amino-terminal peptide-related antigen, total phospholipids, and lactate dehydrogenase activity were measured.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / chemistry
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / cytology*
  • Cell Count
  • Fibronectins / analysis
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / analysis
  • Lung / pathology
  • Lung Injury
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Neutrophils / pathology
  • Peptide Fragments / analysis
  • Phospholipids / analysis
  • Procollagen / analysis
  • Time Factors


  • Fibronectins
  • Peptide Fragments
  • Phospholipids
  • Procollagen
  • procollagen Type III-N-terminal peptide
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase