Pulmonary Inflammation and Thrombogenicity Caused by Diesel Particles in Hamsters: Role of Histamine

Abderrahim Nemmar, Benoit Nemery, Peter H.M. Hoet, Jos Vermylen, Marc F. Hoylaerts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

121 Citations (Scopus)


Short-term increases in particulate air pollution are associated with increased incidence of cardiovascular events. Previously, we showed that intratracheally instilled diesel exhaust particles (DEPs) are prothrombotic. Here, we investigated the time course and the mechanisms. At 1, 6, and 24 hours after instillation of 50 μg DEPs per hamster, the mean size of in vivo-induced and quantified venous thrombosis was increased by 480%, 770%, and 460%, respectively. Platelets activation in blood was confirmed by a shortened closure time in the platelet function analyzer (PFA-100). In bronchoalveolar lavage, neutrophils and histamine levels were increased at all time points. In plasma, histamine was increased at 6 and 24 hours but not at 1 and 3 hours. Pretreatment with a histamine H1-receptor antagonist (diphenhydramine, 30 mg/kg intraperitoneally) abolished the DEP-induced neutrophil influx in bronchoalveolar lavage at all time points. However, diphenhydramine pretreatment did not affect DEP-induced thrombosis or platelet activation at 1 hour, whereas both were markedly reduced at 6 and 24 hours. In conclusion, pulmonary inflammation and peripheral thrombosis are correlated at 6 and 24 hours, but at 1 hour, the prothrombotic effects do not appear to result from pulmonary inflammation but possibly from the blood penetration of DEP-associated components or by DEP particles themselves.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1366-1372
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Air pollution
  • Histamine
  • Lung inflammation
  • Particles
  • Thrombosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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