This unit focuses on protocols for assessing microenvironment-specific responses in the thoracic lung tissues. Aspects of the entire respiratory system serve as potential targets for candidate toxicants, but each candidate toxicant may impact distinct sites due to differential distribution of either the toxicant or the target cells. Within the conducting airways, the composition of resident cell populations and the metabolic capabilities of the cell populations vary greatly. Thus, studies of this region of the lung require unique, site-selective methods to clearly define the toxic response. Without site-specific sampling, as described in this chapter, the experimental limit of detection for toxicant effects in conducting airways is weakened because differences unrelated to treatment, but related to location, may dominate the response. The protocols included here allow assessment of toxicological responses in the tracheobronchial airways and the gas exchange area of the lung, with specific application to laboratory mammals.
- Environmental pollutants
ASJC Scopus subject areas