Role of Eicosanoids in the Development of ARDS

  • M. Leeman
  • J.-M. Boeynaems
Part of the Anaesthesiologie und Intensivmedizin / Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine book series (A+I, volume 167)


Numerous experimental studies suggest that the generation of arachidonate metabolites can play a role in the development of Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). In normal conditions, arachidonate is bound to the phospholipids of cell membranes. Following injury and in response to various mediators, free arachidonic acid is released from membrane phospholipids by the action of phospholipases. This arachidonic acid can serve as a substrate for production of prostaglandins (PG) and thromboxanes (Tx) through a cycloxygenase enzyme and as a substrate for the production of several hydroxy fatty acids and leukotrienes (LT) through the action of lipoxygenase enzymes. The lung is an important organ in the arachidonate cascade since it possesses the enzymatic capacity to synthetize all the arachidonate derivatives and is also responsible in large part for selective catabolism of circulating eicosanoids.


Pulmonary Hypertension Adult Respiratory Distress Syndrome Free Arachidonic Acid Pulmonary Vascular Permeability Endotoxin Infusion 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Leeman
  • J.-M. Boeynaems

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