Terbutaline improves ischemia-reperfusion injury after left-sided orthotopic rat lung transplantation

Jürg Hamacher, Rudolf Lucas, Uz Stammberger, Albrecht Wendel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


2-Agonists have been shown to increase alveolar fluid reabsorption, and at least part of their effect depends on active sodium transport from the alveolus into the epithelial cell by the amiloride-sensitive epithelial sodium channel (ENaC). Few data exist on their effect in the injured lung. The authors therefore investigated the effect of intrabronchially administered terbutaline pretransplantation by measuring outcome 1 day after experimental donor lung transplantation with severe injury due to prolonged ischemia. Orthotopic single left-sided lung allotransplantation was performed in female rats (Wistar to Wistar) after a total ischemic time of 20 hours. Graft PaO2/FiO2 in 6 recipients treated with 10-4 M terbutaline in 500 L NaCl 0.9% was superior 24 hours after transplantation, with a PaO2 of 329 (111 [SD]) mm Hg versus 5 vehicle controls with 44 (15) mm Hg (P =.002). The beneficial effect of 10-4 M terbutaline was abrogated by 10-4 M of the sodium channel blocker amiloride to 71 (34) mm Hg in 3 recipients (P =.028 versus terbutaline 10-4 M). Ten recipients receiving 10-5 M terbutaline in 500 L NaCl 0.9% showed inconsistent improvements of gas exchange, with a PaO2 of 158 ( 153) mm Hg (P =.058). Terbutaline at a high dose significantly improved the transplanted rat lung function at 24 hours after transplantation. Part of it may be via activating epithelial sodium transport, thus suggesting an important role of alveolar fluid transport in such a model of acute lung injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-185
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental Lung Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 2009


  • Lung injury
  • Lung transplantation
  • Pulmonary edema
  • Rat
  • Reperfusion injury
  • Terbutaline
  • Therapeutics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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