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Remodeling of the extracellular matrix in COPD. a process of accelerated lung ageing?

Muizer, K. (2017) Remodeling of the extracellular matrix in COPD. a process of accelerated lung ageing? Master's Thesis / Essay, Biomedical Sciences.

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Abstract

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic, life-threatening lung disease characterized by the chronic obstruction of lung airflow, interfering with normal breathing. The main risk factor for COPD is the inhalation of noxious gases, which causes damage to airway epithelial cells by increasing reactive oxygen species levels. This, in turn, is thought to contribute to chronic inflammation and aberrant repair processes leading to remodeling of the extracellular matrix. It has often been suggested that COPD is a disease of accelerated lung ageing. In this thesis we wanted to investigate whether the remodeling of the ECM seen in COPD is similar to remodeling of the ECM seen in ageing and whether it occurs much faster than in ageing, possibly enabling us to conclude whether COPD is indeed a disease of accelerated lung ageing. The main components of the ECM surrounding the lung epithelium consist of collagen, elastin, fibronectin, laminin, glycosaminoglycans, proteoglycans, matrix metalloproteinases and tenascin-C. In different areas (small airways and parenchyma) of the lung, different levels of each components were expressed. Upon investigating the changes in individual components of the ECM in COPD and in ageing, we found that for both collagen protein expression was increased, elastin protein expression was decreased and tenascin-C protein expression was increased in both the small airways and the parenchyma. For the other ECM components discussed, no comparison could be made, due to conflicting or lack of data. It was also found that there are high similarities between the processes involved in the remodeling of the ECM in COPD in ageing. In both ageing and COPD chronic inflammation, caused by oxidative stress, results in a profibrotic phenotype and emphysema. This ultimately causes aberrant tissue repair and ECM remodeling. The main difference between the two was the speed with which this remodeling occurs. It is therefore plausible to state that remodeling of ECM seen in COPD is a process of accelerated lung ageing. To fully understand the changes in individual components of the ECM in COPD and ageing, more uniform studies should be performed, with the same subject criteria and experimental set-up.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Degree programme: Biomedical Sciences
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:32
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:32
URI: http://fse.studenttheses.ub.rug.nl/id/eprint/16040

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