Swine confinement buildings: effects of airborne particles and settled dust on airway smooth muscles.
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University Institute of Cardiology and Pneumology of Quebec, Canada
Department of Environmental and Occupational Medicine, University of Aarhus, Denmark
Annick Demanche   

Institut Universitaire de Cardiologie et de Pneumologie de Québec, 2725, chemin Sainte-Foy, Québec, Qc, Canada G1V 4G5.
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2009;16(2):233–238
Swine confinement workers are exposed to various contaminants. These agents can cause airway inflammation and bronchoconstriction. This study was undertaken to evaluate if the bronchoconstrictive effects of swine barn air and settled dust are mediated by endotoxin, and if these effects are directly mediated on airway smooth muscles. Mouse tracheas where isolated and mounted isometrically in organ baths. Tracheas, with or without epithelium, were attached to a force transducer and tension was recorded. Concentrated swine building air at 68 EU/ml or settled dust extract at 0.01 g/ml were added for 20 minutes and tracheal smooth muscle contraction was measured. Direct role of LPS was assessed by removing it from air concentrates with an endotoxin affinity resin. Swine barn air and settled dust extract caused contraction of tracheal smooth muscle by 26 and 20%, respectively, of the maximal induced by methacholine. Removal of epithelium did not affect the contractile effects. LPS alone and LPS with peptidoglycans did not induce contraction. However, when endotoxin was removed from swine barn air concentrates, it lost 24% of its contractile effect. Concentrated swine barn air and settled dust have direct effects on airway smooth muscles. This effect is partially due to LPS but a synergy with other components of the environment of swine confinement buildings is required.