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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2007, Article ID 93726, 6 pages
Clinical Study

Increased Endothelin-1 Levels of BAL Fluid in Patients with Behçet's Disease

1Homeostasis and Cell Dysfunction Unit Research 99/UR/08-40, Medicine University of Tunis, Tunis 1007, Tunisia
2Pneumology Hospital A. Mami, Department of Paediatric and Respiratory Diseases, Pavillon B, Ariana 2080, Tunisia

Received 24 November 2006; Revised 13 January 2007; Accepted 16 January 2007

Copyright © 2007 Kamel Hamzaoui 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.


Objective and background. Pulmonary aneurysms and thrombosis constitute a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in Behçet's disease (BD). Various factors have been studied to explore the pathogenesis of vascular involvement in BD. As endothelin (ET) is known for its potent vasoconstrictor and proinflammatory properties, we supposed that it is involved during the inflammatory process of BD pulmonary vasculitis. Methods. To investigate the role of ET in BD, ET-1 concentrations were measured in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) of 18 nonsmoking BD patients with pulmonary manifestations and 12 control subjects. Immunoreactivity of ET-1 was also evaluated in alveolar macrophages (AMs) cytoplasm. Results. ET-1 levels in BD-BALF were significantly higher than those of controls. ET-1 levels were correlated with the number of alveolar macrophages, but not with BAL-CD4/CD8 ratio. ET-1-immunoreactivity was found mainly in AM of BD-BAL. Conclusions. Increased ET-1 production from AM is associated with pulmonary BD manifestations.