Recent research suggested an important role for pulmonary extracellular adenosine triphosphate (ATP) in the development of ventilation-induced lung injury. This injury is induced by mechanical deformation of alveolar epithelial cells, which in turn release ATP to the extracellular space. Measuring extracellular ATP in exhaled breath condensate (EBC) may be a non-invasive biomarker for alveolar deformation. Here, we study the feasibility of bedside ATP measurement in EBC. We measured ATP levels in EBC in ten subjects before and after an exercise test, which increases respiratory parameters and alveolar deformation. EBC lactate concentrations were measured as a dilution marker. We found a significant increase in ATP levels in EBC (before 73 RLU [IQR 50–209] versus after 112 RLU [IQR 86–203]; p value 0.047), and the EBC ATP-to-EBC lactate ratio increased as well (p value 0.037). We present evidence that bedside measurement of ATP in EBC is feasible and that ATP levels in EBC increase after exercise. Future research should measure ATP levels in EBC during mechanical ventilation as a potential biomarker for alveolar deformation.

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Purinergic Signalling
Department of Intensive Care

van der Zee, P. (Philip), Somhorst, P., Molinger, J. (Jeroen), Hasan, D., & Gommers, D. (2018). A feasibility study into adenosine triphosphate measurement in exhaled breath condensate: a potential bedside method to monitor alveolar deformation. Purinergic Signalling, 1–7. doi:10.1007/s11302-018-9607-6