Notices
Results 1 to 2 of 2

Thread: How are alveolar walls destroyed when someone has emphysema?

  1. #1 How are alveolar walls destroyed when someone has emphysema? 
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1
    I have searched the internet for many hours trying to find an answer and I can only find vague explanations.

    So phagocytes release elastase which destroys elastin in the alveolar and bronchioles, this causes the alveolar to become enlarged making it harder to breathe out as they no longer go back down to their usual size which would push air out. Also, the bronchioles lose the elastin which supports them and keeps them open, making them more likely to collapse when coupled with the loss of positive pressure that is usually applied on them when the alveolar forces air out.

    and then somehow the alveolar walls become destroyed which results in loss of surface area in the alveolar. I can find no explanation as for how they are destroyed. I can find some vague references to trapped air and coughing, and others to enlargement of alveolar walls somehow equals destruction. The star trek enterprise doesn't just beam the alveolar walls into space, how are they destroyed exactly once they have become enlarged? More enzymes from phagocytes break the walls down entirely? coughing? How do we go from loss of elasticity to destruction?


    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    SHF
    SHF is offline
    Forum Sophomore
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    London
    Posts
    107
    In emphysema there is mild chronic inflammation. Lots of macrophages/T-cells/neutrophils. Inflammatory meditors (e.g. leukotriene B4, IL-8, TNF, etc). Exact pathogenesis unclear. Ideas include protease-antiprotease mechanism and imbalance of oxidants/antioxidants.

    If you have a chronic inflammatory process occurring in the tissues, you will have ongoing proteolytic activity (e.g. neutrophil granule release containing elastase, proteinase 3, and cathepsin G; also matrix metalloproteinases from macrophages/neutrophils).

    Antioxidants (e.g. superoxide dismutase and glutathione) depleted by reactive oxygen species/free radicals (from neutrophils; also from smoking). Antioxidants prevent oxidative damage to tissue so their depletion leads to damage. Oxidative injury has many effects such inactivation of antiproteases.

    Note there are many (freely accessible) papers that go into lots of details such as:
    Pathogenesis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease


    Reply With Quote  
     

Similar Threads

  1. Does soap lyse cell walls?
    By JoshuaL in forum Biology
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: September 18th, 2012, 09:30 AM
  2. Smallpox- should it be kept or 'destroyed'?
    By x(x-y) in forum Biology
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: May 24th, 2011, 10:19 AM
  3. Moving through walls
    By zendra in forum Physics
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: May 26th, 2010, 02:00 PM
  4. Energy is never destroyed
    By robizeratul in forum Astronomy & Cosmology
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: May 17th, 2010, 11:56 AM
  5. Mother-of-cider & Alveolar Structures
    By Vif Argent in forum Biology
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: December 13th, 2009, 10:34 AM
Tags for this Thread

View Tag Cloud

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •