S-carboxymethylcysteine normalises airway responsiveness in sensitised and challenged mice

K. Takeda, N. Miyahara, T. Kodama, C. Taube, A. Balhorn, A. Dakhama, K. Kitamura, A. Hirano, Mitsune Tanimoto, E. W. Gelfand

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23 Citations (Scopus)


S-carboxymethylcysteine (S-CMC) has been used as a mucoregulator in respiratory diseases. However, the mechanism of action of S-CMC on allergic airway inflammation has not yet been defined. In the present study, BALB/c mice were initially sensitised and challenged to ovalbumin (OVA) and, weeks later, re-challenged with OVA (secondary challenge). S-CMC (5-100 mg·kg-1) was administered from 2 days before the secondary challenge through to the day of assay. Mice developed airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) 6 h after the secondary challenge and increased numbers of neutrophils were present in the bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid. At 72 h after secondary challenge, mice again developed AHR, but the BAL fluid contained large numbers of eosinophils. S-CMC treatment was found to reduce AHR and neutrophilia at 6 h, as well as eosinophilia and AHR at 72 h. These effects appeared to be dose dependent. Goblet cell hyperplasia, observed at 72 h, was reduced by S-CMC. In BAL fluid, increased levels of interferon-γ, interleukin (IL)-12 and IL-10 and decreased levels of IL-5 and IL-13 were detected. In conclusion, the data indicate that S-carboxymethylcysteine is effective in reducing airway hyperresponsiveness and airway inflammation at two distinct phases of the response to the secondary allergen challenge in sensitised mice. Copyright

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)577-585
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Respiratory Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Airway hyperresponsiveness
  • Eosinophils
  • Neutrophils
  • S-carboxymethylcysteine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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