Lung Lavage and Surfactant Replacement During Ex Vivo Lung Perfusion for Treatment of Gastric Acid Aspiration–Induced Donor Lung Injury
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BACKGROUND: Ex vivo lung perfusion (EVLP) provides opportunities to treat injured donor lungs before transplantation. We investigated whether lung lavage, to eliminate inflammatory inhibitory components, followed by exogenous surfactant replacement, could aid lung recovery and improve post-transplant lung function after gastric aspiration injury. METHODS: Gastric acid aspiration was induced in donor pigs, which were ventilated for 6 hours to develop lung injury. After retrieval and 10 hours of cold preservation, EVLP was performed for 6 hours. The lungs were randomly divided into 4 groups (n = 5, each): (1) no treatment (control), (2) lung lavage, (3) surfactant administration, and (4) lung lavage, followed by surfactant administration. After another 2-hour period of cold preservation, the left lung was transplanted and reperfused for 4 hours. RESULTS: Physiologic lung function significantly improved after surfactant administration during EVLP. The EVLP perfusate from the lavage + surfactant group showed significantly lower levels of interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, IL-8, and secretory phospholipase A2. Total phosphatidylcholine was increased, and minimum surface tension was recovered to normal levels (≤5 mN/m) in the bronchioalveolar fluid after surfactant administration. Lysophosphatidylcholine in bronchioalveolar fluid was significantly lower in the lavage + surfactant group than in the surfactant group. Post-transplant lung function was significantly better in the lavage + surfactant group compared with all other groups. CONCLUSIONS: Lung lavage, followed by surfactant replacement during EVLP, reduced inflammatory mediators and prevented hydrolysis of phosphatidylcholine, which contributed to the superior post-transplant function in donor lungs with aspiration injury.
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