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Glutathione improves the function of porcine pulmonary grafts stored for twenty-four hours in low-potassium dextran solution

: Sommer, S.P.; Gohrbandt, B.; Fischer, S.; Hohlfeld, J.M.; Warnecke, G.; Avsar, M.; Struber, M.


The journal of thoracic and cardiovascular surgery 130 (2005), Nr.3, S.864-869
ISSN: 0022-5223
Fraunhofer ITEM ()
blood pressure; body water; cardiac output; organ preservation; peroxidase; pulmonary artery; pulmonary circulation; pulmonary surfactant; reperfusion injury; vascular resistance; Glutathione; Lungs

BACKGROUND: Flush perfusion with low-potassium dextran is the standard strategy in clinical lung preservation. Despite improved outcome, endothelial cell injury and surfactant dysfunction remain a significant problem after lung transplantation. The radical scavenger glutathione has been shown to be responsible for the efficacy of Celsior solution in lung preservation. We tested the hypothesis that the addition of glutathione to low-potassium dextran might further improve graft function by ameliorating ischemia-reperfusion injury. METHODS: In 12 domestic pigs, lungs were flush preserved with either low-potassium dextran (n = 6) or low-potassium dextran supplemented by 5 mmol glutathione (n = 6). Left single lung transplantation was performed after 24-hour storage in low-potassium dextran at 8 degrees C. After 15 minutes of reperfusion the right main bronchus and pulmonary artery were crossclamped. Hemodynamic and respiratory measures were recorded in 30-minute intervals for a total observation period of 7 hours. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid was obtained from the native lung and 2 hours after reperfusion from the graft. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and surfactant composition, and surfactant function analyses were performed. Neutrophil sequestration was assessed by myeloperoxidase activity assay. Tissue water content was calculated from wet/dry weight ratios at the end of the experiment. RESULTS: In the low-potassium dextran group, 2 animals died during reperfusion. After reperfusion, pulmonary vascular resistance (P = .01) and pulmonary artery pressure remained lower in the glutathione/low-potassium dextran group, which was associated with a higher cardiac output (P = .05) in this group. Also, the oxygenation index at the end of the observation period was higher in the glutathione/low-potassium dextran group compared with the low-potassium dextran group (430 +/- 130 vs 338 +/- 184, respectively; P < .05). The graft water content representing postreperfusion lung edema was not different between the 2 study groups. Alteration of surfactant was less in the glutathione/low-potassium dextran group with a significantly decreased small to large aggregate ratio (P = .03) versus low-potassium dextran group. Myeloperoxidase activity was twice as high in the low-potassium dextran group when compared with the glutathione/low-potassium dextran group (glutathione/low-potassium dextran: 134 +/- 110 mU/g vs low-potassium dextran: 274 +/- 168 mU/g, P = .07). CONCLUSION: The addition of glutathione to low-potassium dextran preservation solution reveals beneficial effects on vascular function and surfactant composition in transplanted lungs. Therefore, glutathione ameliorates ischemia-reperfusion injury in a preclinical model of lung transplantation. Future studies are needed to evaluate this promising modification in clinical lung transplantation.