Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 16, Issue 4, pp 215–222 | Cite as

A review of upper respiratory tract inhalation pathology

Review Article

Abstract

The nasal cavity has been described as the portal of entry to the respiratory tract and is constantly exposed to airborne pollutants. The nasal cavity is susceptible to chemically induced injury as a result of exposure to inhaled irritants. Inhalation pathology concerns the lesions present in the tissues of the upper respiratory system. These include the larynx, nasal turbinates, trachea, tracheal bifurcation, and associated lymph nodes. Rats, mice, dogs and non-human primates are commonly used in inhalation studies. Following an overview of an inhalation study, the collection and processing of tissues, the cutting of the slides and the major nasal histology and pathology of the above species will be discussed. Examples of common lesions observed in inhalation studies e.g., arytenoid epithelial hyperplasia, ventral cartilage necrosis, respiratory and olfactory epithelial damage, increased goblet cells, reduced nasal associated lymphoid tissue and tumours will be demonstrated. Taken together, this paper aims to represent a compilation of the current knowledge relative to the normal structure of the upper respiratory system of rats, mice, dogs and non-human primates with a comprehensive characterisation of toxic and proliferative lesions.

Keywords

Nasal turbinates Larynx Respiratory epithelium Olfactory epithelium Trachea Transitional epithelium Squamous epithelium Tracheal bifurcation 

Abbreviations

URT

upper respiratory epithelium

H and E

haematoxylin and eosin

NALT

nasal associated lymphoid tissue

LALT

larynx associated lymphoid tissue

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank David Bell and the US National Toxicology Programme for the loan of some of the photomicrographs.

References

  1. Brown HR (1990) Neoplastic and potentially preneoplastic changes in the upper respiratory tract of rats and mice. Environ Health Perspect 85:291–304PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Feron VJ, Woutersen RA, van Garderen-Hoetmer A, Dreef-van der Meulen HC(1990) Upper respiratory tract tumours in Cpb:WU (Wistar Random) rats. Environ Health Perspect 85:305–315PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Gaskell BA (1990) Nonneoplasitc changes in the olfactory epithelium—experimental studies. Environ Health Perspect 85:275–289PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Harkema JR (1990) Comparative pathology of the nasal mucosa in laboratory animals exposed to inhaled irritants. Environ Health Perspect 85:231–238PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Lewis DJ (1991) Morphological assessment of pathological changes within the rat larynx. Toxicol Pathol 19:352–357PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Maronpot RR (1990) Pathology working group review of selected upper respiratory tract lesions in rats and mice. Environ Health Perspect 85:331–352PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Maronpot RR, Miller RA, Clarke WJ, Westerberg RB, Decker JR, Moss OR (1986) Toxicity of formaldehyde in B6C3F1 mice exposed for 13 weeks. Toxicology 41:253–266PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Monticello TM, Morgan KT, Uraih L (1990) Nonneoplastic nasal lesions in rats and mice. Environ Health Perspect 85:249–274PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Morgan KT (1991) Approaches to the identification and recording of nasal lesions in toxicology studies. Toxicol Pathol 19:337–351PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Renne RA, Gideon KM, Miller RA, Mellick PW, Grumbein SL (1992) Histologic methods and interspecies variations in the laryngeal histology of F344/N rats and B6C3F1 mice. Toxicol Pathol 20(1):44–51PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Reznik GK (1990) Comparative anatomy, physiology, and function of the upper respiratory tract. Environ Health Perspect 85:171–176PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Young JT (1981) Histopathological examination of the rat nasal cavity. Fundam Appl Toxicol 1:309–312PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pathology DepartmentHuntingdon Life SciencesAlconbury, CambsUK
  2. 2.Experimental Pathology LaboratoriesDurhamUSA

Personalised recommendations