The respiratory system is continuously exposed to variety of biological and chemical irritants that contain reactive oxygen species, and these are well known to cause oxidative stress responses in lung epithelial cells. There is a clinical need to identify biomarkers of oxidative stress which could potentially support early indicators of disease and health management. To identify volatile biomarkers of oxidative stress, we analyzed the headspace above human bronchial epithelial cell cultures (HBE1) before and after hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and cigarette smoke extract (CSE) exposure. Using stir bar and headspace sorptive extraction-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, we searched for volatile organic compounds (VOC) of these oxidative measures. In the H2O2 cell peroxidation experiments, four different H2O2 concentrations (0.1, 0.5, 10, 50 mM) were applied to the HBE1 cells, and VOCs were collected every 12 h over the time course of 48 h. In the CSE cell peroxidation experiments, four different smoke extract concentrations (0%, 10%, 30%, 60%) were applied to the cells, and VOCs were collected every 12 h over the time course of 48 h. We used partial-least squares (PLS) analysis to identify putative compounds from the mass spectrometry results that highly correlated with the known applied oxidative stress. We observed chemical emissions from the cells that related to both the intensity of the oxidative stress and followed distinct time courses. Additionally, some of these chemicals are aldehydes, which are thought to be non-invasive indicators of oxidative stress in exhaled human breath. Together, these results illustrate a powerful in situ cell culture model of oxidative stress that can be used to explore the putative biological genesis of exhaled breath biomarkers that are often observed in human clinical studies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine