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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of doxycycline on sulfur mustard-induced respiratory lesions in guinea pigs.

Respiratory tract lesions induced by the chemical warfare agent sulfur mustard (SM) are characterized by epithelial damages associated with inflammatory cell infiltration. Here we evaluated the imbalance between gelatinase and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs), and we tested pretreatment with the protease inhibitor doxycycline. Guinea pigs were intoxicated intratracheally with SM and evaluated 24 h after exposure. Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) gelatinase activity of bronchial lavage (BL) fluid from SM-exposed guinea pigs was high compared with controls, as shown by both zymography and biotinylated substrate degradation, whereas TIMP-1 and -2 levels by immunoblotting were similar. Extensive areas of lysis were evidenced by in situ zymography, indicating imbalance between gelatinases and inhibitors towards net proteolytic activity. Doxycycline pretreatment resulted in 1) decreased gelatinase activity (zymography, free gelatinase activity assay, and in situ zymography); 2) decreased inflammation (BL fluid cellularity and protein level); and 3) dramatic decrease in histological epithelial lesions. Our results suggest inadequate levels of TIMP to counteract increased gelatinase activity and further support a role for MMP gelatinases in SM-induced respiratory lesions. They also suggest that doxycycline may hold promise as a therapeutic tool.[1]


  1. Effect of doxycycline on sulfur mustard-induced respiratory lesions in guinea pigs. Guignabert, C., Taysse, L., Calvet, J.H., Planus, E., Delamanche, S., Galiacy, S., d'Ortho, M.P. Am. J. Physiol. Lung Cell Mol. Physiol. (2005) [Pubmed]
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