Indexed on: 07 Apr '15Published on: 07 Apr '15Published in: International Immunopharmacology
Oxidant-antioxidant imbalance plays an important role in repeated cycles of airway inflammation observed in asthma. It is when reactive oxygen species (ROS) overwhelm antioxidant defenses that a severe inflammatory state becomes apparent and may impact vasculature. Several studies have shown an association between airway inflammation and cardiovascular complications; however so far none has investigated the link between airway oxidative stress and systemic/vascular oxidative stress in a murine model of asthma. Therefore, this study investigated the contribution of oxidative stress encountered in asthmatic airways in modulation of vascular/systemic oxidant-antioxidant balance. Rats were sensitized intraperitoneally with ovalbumin (OVA) in the presence of aluminum hydroxide followed by several intranasal (i.n.) challenges with OVA. Rats were then assessed for airway and vascular inflammation, oxidative stress (ROS, lipid peroxides) and antioxidants measured as total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and thiol content. Challenge with OVA led to increased airway inflammation and oxidative stress with a concomitant increase in vascular inflammation and oxidative stress. Oxidative stress in the vasculature was significantly inhibited by antioxidant treatment, N-acetyl cysteine; whereas hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) inhalation worsened it. Therefore, our study shows that oxidative airway inflammation is associated with vascular/systemic oxidative stress which might predispose these patients to increased cardiovascular risk.