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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 691830, 12 pages
Review Article

The Rabbit as a Model for Studying Lung Disease and Stem Cell Therapy

Cluster for Regenerative Medicine, Advanced Medical & Dental Institute (AMDI), Universiti Sains Malaysia, Bandar Putra Bertam, 13200 Kepala Batas, Malaysia

Received 17 December 2012; Revised 28 February 2013; Accepted 28 February 2013

Academic Editor: Thomas Liehr

Copyright © 2013 Nurfatin Asyikhin Kamaruzaman et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


No single animal model can reproduce all of the human features of both acute and chronic lung diseases. However, the rabbit is a reliable model and clinically relevant facsimile of human disease. The similarities between rabbits and humans in terms of airway anatomy and responses to inflammatory mediators highlight the value of this species in the investigation of lung disease pathophysiology and in the development of therapeutic agents. The inflammatory responses shown by the rabbit model, especially in the case of asthma, are comparable with those that occur in humans. The allergic rabbit model has been used extensively in drug screening tests, and this model and humans appear to be sensitive to similar drugs. In addition, recent studies have shown that the rabbit serves as a good platform for cell delivery for the purpose of stem-cell-based therapy.