Impaired chemotactic responses of bronchoalveolar leukocytes in experimental pneumocniosis

K. Donaldson*, G. M. Brown, D. M. Brown, J. Slight, M. D. Robertson, J. M. G. Davis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Rats were exposed to clouds of the following pneumoconiotic dusts: quartz, coal‐mine dust, and chrysotile asbestos at l0 or 50mg/m3 for 8, 32, and 75 days; for comparison, rats were also exposed to the non‐pathogenic dust titanium dioxide (TiO2). The bronchoalveolar leukocytes (macrophages and neutrophils) from dust‐exposed and control rats were obtained by lavage and tested for their ability to migrate toward zymosan‐activated serum. Varying amounts of neutrophils were present depending on the ability of the dust to cause inflammation and the length of exposure. There was a marked loss of chemotactic ability in leukocytes from rats inhaling the pneumoconiotic dusts compared with controls; TiO2‐exposed leukocytes had some impairment of chemotaxis, but this was substantially less than that found with the pneumoconiotic dusts. The loss of chemotactic activity did not correlate with the percentage of neutrophils in the lavage cells except when there were very high levels of neutrophils, and there was substantial impairment of chemotaxis with negligible numbers of neutrophils, showing that macrophage chemotaxis was impaired. A phagocytic burden within the leucocytes was not sufficient alone to inhibit chemotaxis, nor was the loss of chemotaclic activity due to occupied receptors, since incubation failed lo restore chemotaxis. Loss to chemotactic activity by leukocytes from pneumoconiotic dust‐exposed lung could be an important factor in the development of pneumoconiosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-69
Number of pages7
JournalThe Journal of Pathology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1990


  • bronchoalveolar leukocytes
  • chemotaxis
  • coal‐mine dust
  • inflammation
  • phagocytosis
  • Pneumoconiosis
  • quartz

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Impaired chemotactic responses of bronchoalveolar leukocytes in experimental pneumocniosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this