Ischemic preconditioning before lower limb ischemia-reperfusion protects against acute lung injury

Denis Harkin, Aires Barros D'Sa, K. McCallion, Margaret Hoper, Frederick Campbell

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112 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Prolonged limb ischemia followed by reperfusion (I/R) is associated with a systemic inflammatory response syndrome and remote acute lung injury. Ischemic preconditioning (IPC), achieved with repeated brief periods of I/R before the prolonged ischemic period, has been shown to protect skeletal muscle against ischemic injury. The aim of this study was to ascertain whether IPC of the limb before I/R injury also attenuates systemic inflammation and acute lung injury in a fully resuscitated porcine model of hind limb I/R. Methods: This prospective, randomized, controlled, experimental animal study was performed in a university-based animal research facility with 18 male Landrace pigs that weighed from 30 to 35 kg. Anesthetized ventilated swine were randomized (n = 6 per group) to three groups: sham-operated control group, I/R group (2 hours of bilateral hind limb ischemia and 2.5 hours of reperfusion), and IPC group (three cycles of 5 minutes of ischemia/5 minutes of reperfusion immediately preceding I/R). Plasma was separated and stored at -70° C for later determination of plasma tumor necrosis factor-a and interleukin-6 with bioassay as markers of systemic inflammation. Circulating phagocytic cell priming was assessed with a whole blood chemiluminescence assay. Lung tissue wet-to-dry weight ratio and myeloperoxidase concentration were markers of edema and neutrophil sequestration, respectively. The alveolar-arterial oxygen gradient and pulmonary artery pressure were indices of lung function. Results: In a porcine model, bilateral hind limb (I/R) injury significantly increased plasma interleukin-6 concentrations, circulating phagocytic cell priming, and pulmonary leukosequestration, edema, and impaired gas exchange. Conversely, pigs treated with IPC before the onset of the ischemic period had significantly reduced interleukin-6 levels, circulating phagocytic cell priming, and experienced significantly less pulmonary edema, leukosequestration, and respiratory failure. Conclusion: Lower limb IPC protects against systemic inflammation and acute lung injury in lower limb I/R injury.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1264-1273
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Vascular Surgery
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery


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