Lung capillary albumin leak in oxygen toxicity. A quantitative immunocytochemical study

K L Weir, E N O'Gorman, J A Ross, D J Godden, A D McKinnon, P W Johnston

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13 Citations (Scopus)


The study is based on the hypothesis that lung endothelial cell permeability increases in 100% oxygen and predates the appearance of microscopically visible interstitial edema. Rats were exposed to either 100% oxygen or air in a chamber. Endogenous albumin was used as an index of permeability and measured by electron microscopic colloidal gold linked immunocytochemistry, quantified by systematic random methods. Albumin staining was expressed as relative albumin concentration (RAC), the ratio of gold particles (x 100) per point counted (gp.10(2)/pt) relating to each component. The RAC in lung perivascular/peribronchial interstitial ground substance after 24 h of hyperoxia was five times more than that of rats exposed to air for the same interval. The median value (interquartile ranges) for the oxygen-exposed group was 92.4 (39.5, 149.6) gp. 10(2)/pt compared with 14.7 (6.6, 25.9) gp. 10(2)/pt for the air-exposed group. After 60 h of 100% oxygen, the RAC was 103.4 (65.5, 148.9) gp. 10(2)/pt (60-h air exposed RAC was 11.6 (8.7, 60.4) gp. 10(2)/pt), no different from 24-h exposures. These results suggest that there was a significant leak of albumin to the perivascular/peribronchial interstitium by 24 h of exposure to 100% oxygen, which would indicate endothelial cell permeability to albumin increases earlier than has previously been reported.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)784-9
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1994


  • Air
  • Albumins
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Capillaries
  • Capillary Permeability
  • Endothelium, Vascular
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lung
  • Male
  • Oxygen
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Specific Pathogen-Free Organisms
  • Time Factors


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