New publication: E-cigarette use increases susceptibility to bacterial infection by impairment of human neutrophil chemotaxis, phagocytosis and NET formation

Nanolive is proud to announce a new publication in the American Journal of Physiology – Cell Physiology by our customers at the University of California San Diego in the United States[1].

E-cigarettes are a popular alternative to conventional tobacco, usually sold as safer and less toxic than regular cigarettes. It has been estimated that as many as 7-12% adults and 37% adolescents use e-cigarettes on a normal basis [2]–[4]. E-cigarettes have been linked to several respiratory diseases, such as lipoid pneumonia and bronchiolitis [5], [6]. However, the mechanisms underlying this innate immune cell function alteration caused by e-cigarette exposure had not yet been explained.

Corriden and colleagues studied immune cell function alteration due to e-cigarette use on isolated human neutrophils and on a mouse model of chronic e-cigarette use. Neutrophils play a key role in innate immune system by controlling and eliminating infections.

Their experiments on isolated human neutrophils allowed them to conclude that e-cigarette vapor has a negative effect on neutrophils. An inhibition on their chemotaxis and on the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) was observed. Isolated human neutrophils also showed an alteration in actin polarization and membrane fluidity. An effect on neutrophil phagocytosis after e-cigarette vapor exposure was also detailed.

Mice models allowed for an observation of an alteration in host defenses, with diminished migration of neutrophils to the site of bacterial infection.

Nanolive’s 3D Cell Explorer was used to visualize alterations in morphology between the isolated human neutrophils exposed to e-cigarette vapor and the control group (see Figure 1).

The full article is available here!

Figure 1. Probe-free tomographic microscopy using a NanoLive 3D Cell Explorer microscope revealed an altered morphology of E-cigarette vapor extract- exposed neutrophils[1].


[1]        R. Corriden et al., “E-Cigarette Use Increases Susceptibility to Bacterial Infection by Impairment of Human Neutrophil Chemotaxis, Phagocytosis and NET Formation,” American Journal of Physiology-Cell Physiology, p. ajpcell.00045.2019, Oct. 2019.

[2]        D. T. Levy, Z. Yuan, and Y. Li, “The prevalence and characteristics of E-cigarette users in the U.S,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 14, no. 10, Oct. 2017.

[3]        K. L. Marynak et al., “National and State Trends in Sales of Cigarettes and E-Cigarettes, U.S., 2011–2015,” American Journal of Preventive Medicine, vol. 53, no. 1, pp. 96–101, Jul. 2017.

[4]        S. Shin and L. E. Crotty Alexander, “Global state of tobacco use: Summary from the American Thoracic Society International Conference 2016,” Journal of Thoracic Disease, vol. 8, no. 7, AME Publishing Company, pp. S582–S585, 2016.

[5]        M. Flower, L. Nandakumar, M. Singh, D. Wyld, M. Windsor, and D. Fielding, “Respiratory bronchiolitis-associated interstitial lung disease secondary to electronic nicotine delivery system use confirmed with open lung biopsy,” Respirology Case Reports, vol. 5, no. 3, May 2017.

[6]        L. McCauley, C. Markin, and D. Hosmer, “An unexpected consequence of electronic cigarette use,” Chest, vol. 141, no. 4, pp. 1110–1113, 2012.

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