Fibrotic change is one of the important reasons for the poor prognosis of patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The present study investigated the effects of hydrogen-rich saline, a selective hydroxyl radical scavenger, on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced pulmonary fibrosis. Male ICR mice were divided randomly into 5 groups: Control, LPS-treated plus vehicle treatment, and LPS-treated plus hydrogen-rich saline (2.5, 5, or 10 ml/kg) treatment. Twenty-eight days later, fibrosis was assessed by determination of collagen deposition, hydroxyproline, and type I collagen levels. Development of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) was identified by examining protein expressions of E-cadherin and α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA). Transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 content, total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC), malondialdehyde (MDA) content, catalase (CAT), and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity were determined. Mice exhibited increases in collagen deposition, hydroxyproline, type I collagen contents, and TGF-β1 production in lung tissues after LPS treatment. LPS-induced lung fibrosis was associated with increased expression of α-SMA, as well as decreased expression of E-cadherin. In addition, LPS treatment increased MDA levels but decreased T-AOC, CAT, and SOD activities in lung tissues, indicating that LPS induced pulmonary oxidative stress. Hydrogen-rich saline treatment at doses of 2.5, 5, or 10 ml/kg significantly attenuated LPS-induced pulmonary fibrosis. LPS-induced loss of E-cadherin in lung tissues was largely reversed, whereas the acquisition of α-SMA was dramatically decreased by hydrogen-rich saline treatment. In addition, hydrogen-rich saline treatment significantly attenuated LPS-induced oxidative stress. Hydrogen-rich saline may protect against LPS-induced EMT and pulmonary fibrosis through suppressing oxidative stress.
Dong WW, Zhang YQ, Zhu XY, et al. Protective effects of hydrogen-rich saline against lipopolysaccharide-induced alveolar epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and pulmonary fibrosis. Med Sci Monit. 2017 May 19;23:2357-2364.