Modification of transepithelial ion transport in human cultured bronchial epithelial cells by interferon-γ

Luis J V Galietta, Chiara Folli, Carla Marchetti, Luca Romano, Daniela Carpani, Massimo Conese, Olga Zegarra-Moran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Human bronchial epithelial cells were treated in vitro with interferon- γ or tumor necrosis factor-α to assess their effect on transepithelial ion transport. Short-circuit current measurements revealed that Na+ absorption was markedly inhibited by interferon-γ (10-1,000 U/ml). The cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator was also downregulated by interferon-γ as evident at the protein level and by the decrease in the cAMP-dependent current. On the other hand, interferon-γ caused an increase of the current elicited by apical UTP application, which is due to the activity of Ca2+- dependent Cl- channels. Tumor necrosis factor-α caused few changes in ion transport. Transepithelial fluid transport was measured in normal and cystic fibrosis cells. At rest, both types of cells showed an amiloride-sensitive fluid absorption that was inhibited by interferon-γ but not by tumor necrosis factor-α. Our results show that interferon-γ alters the transepithelial ion transport of cultured bronchial cells. This effect may change the ion composition and/or volume of periciliary fluid.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number6 22-6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2000


  • Airway epithelium
  • Airway surface fluid
  • Chloride transport
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Sodium absorption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cell Biology
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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