[Neutrophil elastase and elastin-derived peptides in BAL fluid and emphysematous changes on CT scans]

Nihon Kyobu Shikkan Gakkai Zasshi. 1996 Dec;34 Suppl:69-74.
[Article in Japanese]


We examined the relationship between neutrophil elastase, elastin-derived peptides in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid, and the development of pulmonary emphysema. The level of neutrophil elastase was higher in asymptomatic current smokers with emphysematous changes on computed tomographic scans than in current smokers without emphysematous changes, and was found to be correlated with the level of elastin-derived peptides in BAL fluid. Subjects with high levels of neutrophil elastase in BAL fluid had faster annual declines in FEV1. We conclude that the level of neutrophil elastase in BAL fluid can be used to differentiate asymptomatic cigarette smokers who are at risk for pulmonary emphysema from those who are not.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / chemistry*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Elastin / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Leukocyte Elastase / analysis*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Emphysema / diagnosis*
  • Risk
  • Smoking / adverse effects
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed


  • Biomarkers
  • Elastin
  • Leukocyte Elastase