Healthy volunteers inhaled lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or saline (n=6 for each group). Blood was collected at 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8 h and bronchoscopy with bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) performed at 8 h. Multiparameter flow cytometry was used to characterise monocyte subpopulations, neutrophils and Tregs in the blood and lung.
Inhalation of LPS was associated with significant blood and BAL fluid neutrophilia. Blood populations of monocyte subpopulations and Tregs were unaltered by LPS. In contrast, LPS induced an accumulation of a pulmonary monocyte-like cell (PMLC) population, which was further subdivided into “inducible” CD14++CD16- and “resident” CD14++CD16+ subsets. Inducible PMLCs were significantly increased following LPS inhalation (p=0.0046), whereas resident PMLCs were unchanged. In addition, we noted a significant decrease in Tregs in BAL fluid with LPS inhalation (p=0.027).
The early stages of LPS-induced inflammation in humans is characterised by pulmonary accumulation of a novel inducible monocyte-like subpopulation, accompanied by significant changes in both neutrophil and Treg numbers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine