Volume 50 (2012) Issue 4 Pages 299-306
Leukotrienes (LTs) are involved in the pathogenesis of lung fibrosis and were increased in exhaled breath condensate (EBC) of the patients with pneumoconiosis. However the possible influence of extra-pulmonary disorders on the EBC markers is not known. Therefore in parallel with EBC, LTs’ levels in the plasma and urine were measured in patients with pneumoconiosis (45 × asbestos exposure, 37 × silica exposure) and in 27 controls. Individual LTs B4, C4, D4 and E4 were measured by liquid chromatography – electrospray ionization – tandem mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS/MS). In EBC, LT D4 and LT E4 were increased in both groups of patients (p<0.001 and p<0.05), comparing with the controls. Both LT B4 and cysteinyl LTs were elevated in asbestos-exposed subjects (p<0.05). Asbestosis with more severe radiological signs (s1/s2–t3/u2) and lung functions impairment has shown higher cysteinyl LTs and LT C4 in the EBC (p<0.05) than mild asbestosis (s1/s0–s1/s1). In addition, in the subjects with asbestosis, cysteinyl LTs in EBC correlated with TLC (–0.313, p<0.05) and TLCO/Hb (–0.307, p<0.05), and LT C4 with TLC (–0.358, p<0.05). In pneumoconioses, EBC appears the most useful from the 3 fluids studied.