Lung inflammation may explain the surprise increase in inflammatory lung disease

Lung inflammation is a common side effect of certain drugs in patients with multiple myeloma and peripheral carcinoma, according to a study published in the Journal of Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery.

Scientists at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden retrospectively studied 64 surgical patients with the most common type of multiple myeloma (myelodysplastic syndromes). Most patients showed abnormal inflammation in their lungs, often in areas that are part of the pharynx or nasal cavity.

In a subset of patients, researchers were able to show a significant inflammatory response in both lung structures – lung monokynes and trachea – and a marked increase in lung turbidity, a physiological marker of lung expansion.

“The way in which lung inflammation is regulated has not been previously known, which is why our results are so important for understanding myelodysplastic syndromes”, says Johanna Munk-Sliwinska, researcher at the Department of Internal Medicine at Karolinska Institutet and the study’s first author.

Cytokines are proteins that play a vital role in the regulation of inflammation. According to cyto-SMA researcher Martin Hallbeck, now at the University of Exeter in the UK, a deficient therapy strategy for myelodysplastic syndromes is essential to control inflammation and improve survival.