Animal models to study these mechanisms are limited. This study investigated the effects of single vs. repetitive dust-induced airway inflammation in mice by intranasal exposure method. Mice were exposed to swine facility dust extract (DE) or saline once and once daily for 1 and 2 wk. Dust exposure resulted in increased bronchoalveolar lavage fluid neutrophils and macrophages after single and repetitive exposures. Lavage fluid TNF␣, IL-6, keratinocyte chemoattractant, and macrophage inflammatory protein-2 were significantly increased after single and repetitive dust exposures, but were dampened in 2-wk dust-exposed mice compared with single exposure. Dust exposure induced PKC␣ and -ε activation in isolated tracheal epithelial cells but were dampened with repetitive exposures. Ex vivo stimulation of alveolar macrophages from 2-wk animals demonstrated reduced cytokine responsiveness and phagocytic ability. Significant lung pathology occurred with development of mixed mononuclear cellular aggregates (T and B lymphocytes, phagocytes) after repetitive dust exposure, a novel observation. Airway hyperresponsiveness to methacholine occurred after single dust exposure but resolved after 2 wk. Collectively, intranasal exposure to DE results in significant lung inflammatory and pathological responses marked by a modulated innate immune response to single and repetitive dust exposures that is associated with PKC activity.
Delaying initial exposure to cereal grains until after 6 months may increase the risk of developing wheat allergy. These results do not support delaying introduction of cereal grains for the protection of food allergy.
In agricultural and other environments, inhalation of airborne microorganisms is linked to respiratory disease development. Bacterial endotoxins, peptidoglycans, and fungi are potential causative agents, but relative microbial characterization and inflammatory comparisons amongst agricultural dusts are not well described. The aim of this study was to determine the distribution of microbial endotoxin, 3-hydroxy fatty acids (3-OHFA), muramic acid, and ergosterol and evaluate inflammatory responses in human monocytes and bronchial epithelial cells with various dust samples. Settled surface dust from 5 environments was obtained: swine facility, dairy barn, grain elevator, domestic home (no pets) and domestic home with dog. Endotoxin concentration was determined by recombinant Factor C (rFC). 3-OHFA, muramic acid and ergosterol were measured using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Dust-induced inflammatory cytokine secretion in human monocytes and bronchial epithelial cells was evaluated. Endotoxin-independent dust-induced inflammatory responses were evaluated. Endotoxin and 3-OHFA levels were highest in agricultural dusts. Muramic acid, endotoxin, 3-OHFA and ergosterol were detected in dusts samples. Muramic acid was highest in animal farming dusts. Ergosterol was most significant in grain elevator dust. Agricultural dusts induced monocyte TNFα, IL-6, IL-8 and epithelial cell IL-6 and IL-8 secretion. Monocyte and epithelial IL-6 and IL-8 secretion was not dependent on endotoxin. House dust(s)-induced monocyte TNFα, IL-6, IL-8 secretion. Swine facility dust generally produced elevated responses compared to other dusts. Agricultural dusts are complex with significant microbial component contribution. Large animal farming dust(s)-induced inflammation is not entirely dependent on endotoxin. Addition of muramic acid to endotoxin in large animal farming environment monitoring is warranted.
With increases in large animal-feeding operations to meet consumer demand, adverse upper and lower respiratory health effects in exposed agriculture workers is a concern. The aim of this study was to review large animal confinement feeding operational exposures associated with respiratory disease with focus on recent advances in the knowledge of causative factors and cellular and immunological mechanisms. A PubMed search was conducted with the following keywords: airway, farm, swine, dairy, horse, cattle inflammation, organic dust, endotoxin, and peptidoglycan that were published between 1980 and current. Articles were selected based on their relevance to environmental exposure and reference to airway diseases. Airway diseases included rhinitis, sinusitis, mucus membrane inflammation syndrome, asthma, chronic bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and organic dust toxic syndrome. There is lower prevalence of IgE-mediated asthma and atopy in farmers and their children, but organic dust worsens existing asthma. Multiple etiologic factors are linked to disease including allergens, organic dusts, endotoxins, peptidoglycans and gases. Large animal confinement feeding operations contain a wide-diversity of microbes with increasing focus on Gram-positive bacteria and archeabacteria as opposed to Gram-negative bacteria in mediating disease. Toll-like receptors (TLR) and nucleotide oligomerization domain (NOD)-like innate immune pathways respond to these exposures. Finally, a chronic inflammatory adaptation, tolerance-like response in chronically exposed workers occurs. Large animal confinement farming exposures produces a wide spectrum of upper and lower respiratory tract diseases due to the complex diversity of organic dust, particulates, microbial cell wall components and gases and resultant activation of various innate immune receptor signaling pathways.
Organic dust exposure in agricultural environments results in significant airway inflammatory diseases. Gram-positive cell wall components are present in high concentrations in animal farming dusts, but their role in mediating dust-induced airway inflammation is not clear. This study investigated the role of Toll-like receptor (TLR) 2, a pattern recognition receptor for gram-positive cell wall products, in regulating swine facility organic dust extract (DE)-induced airway inflammation in mice. Isolated lung macrophages from TLR2 knockout mice demonstrated reduced TNF-α, IL-6, keratinocyte chemoattractant/CXCL1, but not macrophage inflammatory protein-2/CXCL2 expression, after DE stimulation ex vivo. Next, using an established mouse model of intranasal inhalation challenge, we analyzed bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and lung tissue in TLR2-deficient and wild-type (WT) mice after single and repetitive DE challenge. Neutrophil influx and select cytokines/chemokines were significantly lower in TLR2-deficient mice at 5 and 24 hours after single DE challenge. After daily exposure to DE for 2 weeks, there were significant reductions in total cellularity, neutrophil influx, and TNF-α, IL-6, CXCL1, but not CXCL2 expression, in TLR2-deficient mice as compared with WT animals. Lung pathology revealed that bronchiolar inflammation, but not alveolar inflammation, was reduced in TLR2-deficient mice after repetitive exposure. Airway hyperresponsiveness to methacholine after dust exposure was similar in both groups. Finally, airway inflammatory responses in WT mice after challenge with a TLR2 agonist, peptidoglycan, resembled DE-induced responses. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the TLR2 pathway is important in regulating swine facility organic dust-induced airway inflammation, which suggests the importance of TLR2 agonists in mediating large animal farming-induced airway inflammatory responses.
Purpose of review Agriculture represents a major industry worldwide, and despite protection against the development of IgE-mediated diseases, chronic exposure to agriculture-related organic dusts is associated with an increased risk of developing respiratory disease. This article will review the literature regarding new knowledge of important etiologic agents in the dusts and focus on the immunologic responses following acute and repetitive organic dust exposures. Recent findings Although endotoxin remains important, there is an emerging role for non-endotoxin components such as peptidoglycans from Gram-positive bacteria. Pattern recognition receptors including Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), TLR2 and intracellular nucleotide oligomerization domain-like receptors are partially responsible for mediating the inflammatory consequences. Repeated organic dust exposures modulate innate and adaptive immune function with a resultant adaptation-like response. However, repetitive exposures cause lung parenchymal inflammation, chronic disease, and lung function decline over time. Summary The immunological consequences of organic dust exposure in the farming industry are likely explained by the diversity of microbial motifs in dust that can elicit differing innate immune receptor signaling pathways. Whereas initial activation results in a robust inflammatory response, repetitive dust exposures modulate immunity. This can result in low-grade, chronic inflammation and/or protection against allergic disease.
Dust samples collected from Nebraska swine confinement facilities (hog dust extract [HDE]) are known to elicit proinflammatory cytokine release from human bronchial epithelial (HBE) cells in vitro. This response involves the activation of two protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms: PKCalpha and PKCepsilon. Experiments were designed to investigate the relationship between the two isoenzymes and the degree to which each is responsible for cytokine release in HBE. Experiments also examined the contribution of TNF-alpha to IL-6 and IL-8 release. PKCalpha and PKCepsilon activities were inhibited using isoform-specific pharmacologic inhibitors and genetically modified dominant-negative (DN) expressing cell lines. Release of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-8, and TNF-alpha was measured and PKC isoform activities assessed. We found that HDE stimulates PKCalpha activity by 1 hour, and within 6 hours the activity returns to baseline. PKCalpha-specific inhibitor or PKCalphaDN cells abolish this HDE-mediated effect. Both IL-6 and IL-8 release are likewise diminished under these conditions compared with normal HBE, and treatment with TNF-alpha-neutralizing antibody does not further inhibit cytokine release. In contrast, PKCepsilon activity was enhanced by 6 hours after HDE treatment. TNF-alpha blockade abrogated this effect. HDE-stimulated IL-6, but not IL-8 release in PKCepsilonDN cells. The concentration of TNF-alpha released by HDE-stimulated HBE is sufficient to have a potent cytokine-eliciting effect. A time course of TNF-alpha release suggests that TNF-alpha is produced after PKCalpha activation, but before PKCepsilon. These results suggest a temporal ordering of events responsible for the release of cytokines, which initiate and exacerbate inflammatory events in the airways of people exposed to agricultural dust.
Background-Organic dust exposure in the agricultural industry results in significant airway disease and lung function decline. Mononuclear phagocytes are key cells that mediate the inflammatory and innate immune response following dust exposure.
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