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Alternative Mechanisms for Long-Acting β2-Adrenergic Agonists in COPD*

Malcolm Johnson, PhD; Stephen Rennard, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

*From GlaxoSmithKline Research and Development (Dr. Johnson), Uxbridge, Middlesex, UK; and University of Nebraska Medical Center (Dr. Rennard), Omaha, NB.

Correspondence to: Malcolm Johnson, PhD, GlaxoSmithKline Research and Development, Stockley Park West, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB11 1BT, United Kingdom; e-mail: mj0859@glaxowellcome.co.uk



Chest. 2001;120(1):258-270. doi:10.1378/chest.120.1.258
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β2-Adrenergic agonists are commonly used as bronchodilators to treat patients with COPD. In addition to prolonged bronchodilation, long-acting β2-agonists (LABAs) exert other effects that may be of clinical relevance. These include inhibition of airway smooth-muscle cell proliferation and inflammatory mediator release, as well as nonsmooth-muscle effects, such as stimulation of mucociliary transport, cytoprotection of the respiratory mucosa, and attenuation of neutrophil recruitment and activation. This review details the possible alternative mechanisms of action of the LABAs, salmeterol and formoterol, in COPD.

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