Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most frequent cause of bronchiolitis. However the pathophysiology of bronchiolitis is unclear. Leukocytes, especially neutrophils, may play an important role in the pathogenesis of bronchiolitis. Whereas we have previously shown that neutrophils augment epithelial leakage and detachment in RSV infection in vitro, it is unknown whether epithelial damage occurs in vivo in infants with RSV bronchiolitis. We hypothesized that respiratory epithelial damage occurs in infants with RSV bronchiolitis and that surfactant proteins leak into the circulation. The plasma concentrations of surfactant protein-A and surfactant protein-B in infants with RSV bronchiolitis were measured by ELISA. Plasma immunoreactive surfactant protein-B in infants with RSV bronchiolitis was markedly higher than that in matching controls. Our study suggests that alveolocapillary permeability is increased in infants with RSV bronchiolitis in vivo and that surfactant protein-B may be a sensitive marker for lung injury in such infants.
|Number of pages||4|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Dec 1999|