The Effects of Irritation on the Structure of Bronchial Epithelium

  • Peter K. Jeffery
Part of the Ettore Majorana International Science Series book series (EMISS, volume 6)


Atmospheric pollution, and in particular personal pollution by tobacco smoke, is a major cause of chronic inflammation of the bronchial mucosa. In man there is an increase in the number of mucus-secreting cells both in surface epithelium and in submucosal glands (i.e. gland hypertrophy) the consequence of which is the production of excessive bronchial mucus and its expectoration as sputum, (Reid 1954). There may also be impairment of mucociliary clearance and an associated persistent cough. It is by these clinical criteria that chronic bronchitis is defined, exacerbations of cough and sputum persisting for more than 3 months in any 2 consecutive years (WHO definition).


Tobacco Smoke Sulphur Dioxide Goblet Cell Mucous Cell Bronchial Epithelium 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter K. Jeffery
    • 1
  1. 1.Cardiothoracic InstituteBrompton HospitalLondonUK

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