Mechanisms of Lung Injury: An Overview
One of the most rapidly evolving areas related to respiratory pathophysiology and disease involves the mechanisms of lung injury. Until a few years ago, pulmonary pathophysiology was domina ted by questions that involved the mechanisms by which gas flow and blood flow in the lung occur, how these two flows are regulated and matched, and how they are altered by disease. These questions were addressed by studies that involved the whole organ (the lung) and usually the whole organism. Such issues continue to be important, and the questions are not completely answered. However, in recent years much investigation has focused on the role of specific lung cells and their products in the functions of the normal lung, and on how cellular functions are altered in disease states. Information on the cell biology of lung disease is accumulating at a rapid rate, and is influencing the management of clinical lung problems. The emphasis on the cell biology and biochemistry of the lung has not replaced the traditional approach (based on gas and blood flow at the whole organ level) but it is definitely altering our understanding and view of these processes.
KeywordsLung Injury Alveolar Macrophage Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome Chemotactic Factor
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