Background: This study seeks to compare the ability of repeatable invasive and noninvasive lung function methods to assess allergen-specific and cholinergic airway responsiveness (AR) in intact, spontaneously breathing BALB/c mice. Methods: Using noninvasive head-out body plethysmography and the decrease in tidal midexpiratory flow (EF50), we determined early AR (EAR) to inhaled Aspergillus fumigatus antigens in conscious mice. These measurements were paralleled by invasive determination of pulmonary conductance (GL), dynamic compliance (Cdyn) and EF50 in another group of anesthetized, orotracheally intubated mice. Results: With both methods, allergic mice, sensitized and boosted with A. fumigatus, elicitedallergen-specific EAR to A. fumigatus (p < 0.05 versus controls). Dose-response studies to aerosolized methacholine (MCh) were performed in the same animals 48 h later, showing that allergic mice relative to controls were distinctly more responsive (p < 0.05) and revealed acute airway inflammation as evidenced from increased eosinophils and lymphocytes in bronchoalveolar lavage. Conclusions: We conclude that invasive and noninvasive pulmonary function tests are capable of detecting both allergen-specific and cholinergic AR in intact, allergic mice. The invasive determination of GL and Cdyn is superior in sensitivity, whereas the noninvasive EF50 method is particularly appropriate for quick and repeatable screening of respiratory function in large numbers of conscious mice.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine