The mechanics of the lung parenchyma and airway responsiveness to metacholine

Francesco G. Salerno, O. Resta, M. P. Foschino-Barbaro, A. Spanevello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The lung parenchyma is anatomically and mechanically connected to the intraparenchymal airways. Due to forces of interdependence the lung parenchyma represents a mechanical load that opposes bronchial narrowing during airway smooth muscle activation. The mechanical load caused by the parenchyma is a function of the number of the alveolar attachments to the airways, and of the mechanical properties of the parenchyma. The extracellular matrix is a major component of the lung parenchyma responsible of most of its mechanical properties. The excessive airway narrowing observed in the asthmatic population may be the consequence of the altered mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix reducing the mechanical load that opposes airway smooth muscle contraction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-225
Number of pages4
JournalMonaldi Archives for Chest Disease - Cardiac Series
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2004


  • Asthma
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Interdependence
  • Lung mechanics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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