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Lung glutathione and oxidative stress: implications in cigarette smoke-induced airway disease *

Glutathione (GSH), a ubiquitous tripeptide thiol, is a vital intra- and extracellular protective antioxidant in the lungs. The rate-limiting enzyme in GSH synthesis is g-glutamylcysteine synthetase (g-GCS). The promoter (58-flanking) region of the human g-GCS heavy and light subunits are regulated by activator protein-1 and antioxidant response elements. Both GSH and g-GCS expression are modulated by oxidants, phenolic antioxidants, and inflammatory and anti-inflammatory agents in lung cells. g-GCS is regulated at both the transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels. GSH plays a key role in maintaining oxidant-induced lung epithelial cell function and also in the control of proinflam-matory processes.
Alterations in alveolar and lung GSH metabolism are widely recognized as a central feature of many inflammatory lung diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Ciga-rette smoking, the major factor in the pathogenesis of COPD, increases GSH in the lung epithelial lining fluid of chronic smokers, whereas in acute smoking, the levels are depleted. These changes in GSH may result from altered gene expression of g-GCS in the lungs. The mechanism of regulation of GSH in the epithelial lining fluid in the lungs of smokers and patients with COPD is not known. Knowledge of the mechanisms of GSH regulation in the lungs could lead to the development of novel therapies based on the pharmacological or genetic manipulation of the production of this important antioxidant in lung inflammation and injury. This review outlines 1) the regulation of cellular GSH levels and g-GCS expression under oxidative stress and 2) the evidence for lung oxidant stress and the potential role of GSH in the pathogenesis of COPD.

* Legal Disclaimer: Chelation and Hyperbaric Therapy, Stem Cell Therapy, and other treatments and modalities mentioned or referred to in this web site are medical techniques that may or may not be considered “mainstream”. As with any medical treatment, results will vary among individuals, and there is no implication or guarantee that you will heal or achieve the same outcome as patients herein.

As with any procedure, there could be pain or other substantial risks involved. These concerns should be discussed with your health care provider prior to any treatment so that you have proper informed consent and understand that there are no guarantees to healing.

THE INFORMATION IN THIS WEBSITE IS OFFERED FOR GENERAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT IMPLY OR GIVE MEDICAL ADVICE. No Doctor/Patient relationship shall be deemed to have arisen simply by reading the information contained on these pages, and you should consult with your personal physician/care giver regarding your medical treatment before undergoing any sort of treatment or therapy.

Published on 05-19-2008