News Column

Data on Metaplasia Detailed by Researchers at North Carolina State University

May 26, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Gastroenterology Week -- Current study results on Gastroenterology have been published. According to news reporting out of Raleigh, North Carolina, by NewsRx editors, research stated, "Nickel nanoparticles (NiNPs) are increasingly used in a variety of industrial applications, including the manufacturing of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs). While occupational nickel exposure is a known cause of pulmonary alveolitis, fibrosis, and cancer, the health risks of NiNPs are not well understood, especially in susceptible individuals such as asthmatics."

Our news journalists obtained a quote from the research from North Carolina State University, "The T-box transcription factor Tbx21 (T-bet) maintains Th1 cell development and loss of T-bet is associated with a shift towards Th2 type allergic airway inflammation that characterizes asthma. The purpose of this study was to determine the role of T-bet in susceptibility to lung remodeling by NiNPs or MWCNTs. Wild-type (WT) and T-bet(-/-) mice were exposed to NiNPs or MWCNTs (4 mg/kg) by oropharyngeal aspiration (OPA). Necropsy was performed at 1 and 21 days. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) was collected for differential counting of inflammatory cells and for measurement of cytokines by ELISA. The left lung was collected for histopathology. The right lung was analyzed for cytokine or mucin (MUC5AC and MUC5B) mRNAs. Morphometry of alcian-blue/periodic acid Schiff (AB/PAS)-stained lung tissue showed that NiNPs significantly increased mucous cell metaplasia in T-bet(-/-) mice at 21 days (p < 0.001) compared to WT mice, and increased MUC5AC and MUC5B mRNAs (p < 0.05). MWCNTs also increased mucous cell metaplasia in T-bet(-/-) mice, but to a lesser extent than NiNPs. Chronic alveolitis was also increased by NiNPs, but not MWCNTs, in T-bet(-/-) mice compared to WT mice at 21 days (P < 0.001). NiNPs also increased IL-13 and eosinophils (p < 0.001) in BALF from T-bet(-/-) mice after 1 day. Interestingly, the chemokine CCL2 in the BALF of T-bet(-/-) mice was increased at 1 and 21 days (p < 0.001 and p< 0.05, respectively) by NiNPs, and to a lesser extent by MWCNTs at 1 day. Treatment of T-bet(-/-) mice with a monoclonal anti-CCL2 antibody enhanced NiNP-induced mucous cell metaplasia and MUC5AC mRNA levels (p < 0.05), yet marginally reduced NiNP-induced alveolitis."

According to the news editors, the research concluded: "These findings identify T-bet as a potentially important susceptibility factor for NiNP exposure and to a lesser extent for MWCNT exposure, and suggests that individuals with asthma are at greater risk."

For more information on this research see: Nickel Nanoparticles cause exaggerated lung and airway remodeling in mice lacking the T-box transcription factor, TBX21 (T-bet). Particle and Fibre Toxicology, 2014;11():2-17. Particle and Fibre Toxicology can be contacted at: Biomed Central Ltd, 236 Grays Inn Rd, Floor 6, London WC1X 8HL, England. (BioMed Central -; Particle and Fibre Toxicology -

Our news journalists report that additional information may be obtained by contacting E.E. Glista-Baker, North Carolina State University, Dept. of Biol Sci, Environm & Mol Toxicol Program, Raleigh, NC 27695, United States. Additional authors for this research include A.J. Taylor, B.C. Sayers, E.A. Thompson and J.C. Bonner (see also Gastroenterology).

Keywords for this news article include: Nickel, Raleigh, Metaplasia, Nanoparticle, United States, North Carolina, Nanotechnology, Gastroenterology, Transition Elements, Emerging Technologies, Transcription Factors, North and Central America

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Source: Gastroenterology Week

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