Chronic inflammation is associated with an increased proportion of goblet cells recovered by bronchial lavage

J. R. Spurzem, Austin Bassett Thompson, D. M. Daughton, M. Mueller, James Linder, S. I. Rennard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

To evaluate the possibility that bronchoalveolar lavage could provide sufficient respiratory epithelial cells to quantify changes in epithelial cell types associated with chronic inflammation, we examined the epithelial cells obtained in the first infused (20 ml) aliquots that were processed separately from later aliquots, a process known to enrich for bronchial contents. Epithelial cells, including ciliated cells, goblet cells, and fragments of desquamated epithelium, were easily identified after preparation by cytocentrifugation and staining with a modified Giemsa stain. Quantification of the columnar cell types revealed that those with chronic bronchitis and asymptomatic smokers have increased goblet cells as a percentage of the total columnar epithelial cells (chronic bronchitics 36±2 percent, asymptomatic smokers 22±2 percent) compared with normal subjects (9±1 percent, p<0.001, ANOVA). Significantly, the goblet cell percentage was strongly correlated with other measures of bronchitis and measures of airflow obstruction such as the bronchitis index, a visually derived score at bronchoscopy of airway inflammation (r=0.72, p<0.001), the percent neutrophils in the first infused aliquots (r=0.44, p<0.05), and the FEV1 percent (r=-0.74, p<0.001). Thus, bronchoalveolar lavage is capable of providing sufficient bronchial epithelial cells for analysis, and the changes seen in the spectrum of columnar epithelial cells may reflect important underlying pathologic changes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)389-393
Number of pages5
JournalChest
Volume100
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1991

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Goblet Cells
Bronchoalveolar Lavage
Epithelial Cells
Inflammation
Bronchitis
Azure Stains
Chronic Bronchitis
Bronchoscopy
Analysis of Variance
Neutrophils
Epithelium
Staining and Labeling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Cite this

Chronic inflammation is associated with an increased proportion of goblet cells recovered by bronchial lavage. / Spurzem, J. R.; Thompson, Austin Bassett; Daughton, D. M.; Mueller, M.; Linder, James; Rennard, S. I.

In: Chest, Vol. 100, No. 2, 01.01.1991, p. 389-393.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Spurzem, J. R. ; Thompson, Austin Bassett ; Daughton, D. M. ; Mueller, M. ; Linder, James ; Rennard, S. I. / Chronic inflammation is associated with an increased proportion of goblet cells recovered by bronchial lavage. In: Chest. 1991 ; Vol. 100, No. 2. pp. 389-393.
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