Effects of lung inflation on airway heterogeneity during histaminergic bronchoconstriction

David W. Kaczka, Wayne Mitzner, Robert H. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Kaczka DW, Mitzner W, Brown RH. Effects of lung inflation on airway heterogeneity during histaminergic bronchoconstriction. J Appl Physiol 115: 626-633, 2013. First published June 27, 2013; doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.00476. 2013.-Lung inflation has been shown to dilate airways by altering the mechanical equilibrium between opposing airway and parenchymal forces. However, it is not known how heterogeneously such dilation occurs throughout the airway tree. In six anesthetized dogs, we measured the diameters of five to six central airway segments using high-resolution computed tomography, along with respiratory input impedance (Zrs) during generalized aerosol histamine challenge, and local histamine challenge in which the agonist was instilled directly onto the epithelia of the imaged central airways. Airway diameters and Zrs were measured at 12 and 25 cmH2O. The Zrs spectra were fitted with a model that incorporated continuous distributions of airway resistances. Airway heterogeneity was quantified using the coefficient of variation for predefined airway distribution functions. Significant reductions in average central airway diameter were observed at 12 cmH2O for both aerosolized and local challenges, along with significant increases upon inflation to 25 cmH2O. No significant differences were observed for the coefficient of variation of airway diameters under any condition. Significant increases in effective airway resistance as measured by Zrs were observed only for the aerosolized challenge at 12 cmH2O, which was completely reversed upon inflation. We conclude that the lung periphery may be the most dominant contributor to increases in airway resistance and tissue elastance during bronchoconstriction induced by aerosolized histamine. However, isolated constriction of only a few central airway segments may also affect tissue stiffness via interdependence with their surrounding parenchyma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)626-633
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013


  • Canine
  • Computed tomography
  • Elastance
  • Histamine
  • Impedance
  • Parameter estimation
  • Resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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