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Koczulla, A. Rembert; Noeske, Sarah; Herr, Christian; Jörres, Rudolf A.; Römmelt, Horst; Vogelmeier, Claus and Bals, Robert (2010): Acute and Chronic Effects of Smoking on Inflammation Markers in Exhaled Breath Condensate in Current Smokers. In: Respiration, No. 1: pp. 61-67 [PDF, 237kB]


Background: Long-term cigarette smoking is associated with pulmonary inflammation, but the acute effects of smoking have been less well studied. Analysis of the exhaled breath condensate (EBC) can provide noninvasive markers that might be indicative of inflammation. Objectives: The aim of the study was to determine whether the pH, electrical conductivity and the levels of ammonium and interleukin 8 (IL-8) of EBC were altered in smokers and whether they changed after smoking a single cigarette. Methods: We included 19 healthy nonsmokers (controls), 29 asymptomatic smokers, 10 patients with stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) {[}Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease stages (GOLD) stages II-III], and 10 patients with exacerbated COPD. In 13 smokers, EBC was also analyzed before and after smoking. EBC was obtained during 10 min tidal breathing with a cooled RTube (TM). pH was determined after deaeration with argon. Results: Acute smoking did not alter the pH or ammonium and IL-8 levels, but raised conductivity. As in COPD patients, the pH was significantly decreased in chronic smokers with a history of at least 10 pack-years compared to controls. Conclusions: EBC can be used to detect the acute and chronic effects of smoking. The increased conductivity of EBC after smoking suggests acute inflammatory effects. The reduced pH in chronic smokers shows cigarette-induced inflammation. Copyright (C) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel

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