Endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) are involved in endothelium repair of acute lung injury (ALI). Numerous studies have demonstrated that statins can promote EPC function in vitro and in vivo; therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine whether simvastatin enhances the function of EPCs participating in the repair of ALI.
BALB/C mice were initially pretreated with simvastatin by intraperitoneal administration 24 h before, and again at the time of, intratracheal instillation of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and subsequently treated with EPCs by IV transplantation 2 h later. The effects of capillary permeability, endothelium repair, and inflammatory cytokines were measured.
This study revealed that both simvastatin administration and EPC transplantation can reduce the severity of LPS-induced ALI in mice, and the effect can be further improved by combining the two therapies.
The administration of simvastatin and EPC transplantation can reduce the severity of LPS-induced ALI in mice, and improvement is moderately enhanced in some respects when EPC transplantation is combined with simvastatin administration. The beneficial role of simvastatin on EPCs may be a component of its pleiotropic effects. Although the exact mechanism remains unknown, the combined administration of simvastatin and EPC transplantation may be a potentially important, cell-based, inflammation-mediated therapy for patients with ALI/ARDS.