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MINERVA PNEUMOLOGICA

A Journal on Diseases of the Respiratory System


Official Journal of the Italian Society of Thoracic Endoscopy
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Minerva Pneumologica 2000 September-December;39(3-4):111-22

language: Italian

Role of endothelin in the respiratory system

Rossi F., Gallelli L., Marrocco G., Capristo C., Miraglia Del Giudice M., Decimo F., Brunese F. P., Capristo A. F., D'Agostino B.


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The bronchmotor tone is the results of a complex interaction between neurotransmitter release and local mediators. The efferent neurohumoral pathways to the muscular, vascular and glandular element include parasympathetic nerves, and non-adrenergic non-cholinergic (NANC) neurotransmission. It is currently recognised that the characteristic features of asthma are airway hyperresponsiveness and inflammatory changes to the airways. An important mediator of these mechanisms is endothelin-1 (ET-1), able to induce bronchoconstriction, airway hyperresponsiveness to histamine and inflammatory cell recruitment. Furthermore, several studies in the literature showed increased levels of ET-1 in bronchalveolar lavage of asthmatic patients. Therefore, in the light of the involvement of ET-1 asthmatic disease, it could be suggested that ET-1 receptor antagonists and endothelin converting enzyme (ECE) inhibitors may useful for investigating mechanisms of bronchopulmonary alterations of asthmatic diseases, and possibly reduce airway hyperresponsiveness in asthmatic patients.

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