Nicotine and immune system
Ryazan State Medical University
Cigarette smoke causes the activation of innate and adaptive immunity as well as the development of lung tissue inflammation. The destruction of the alveolar wall during inflammation contributes to the formation of an autoimmune reaction. Nicotine, as a component of cigarette smoke, reduces the activity of all clinical manifestations, by activating cholinergic anti-inflammatory way. Nicotine decreases innate immunity reactions, specifically the activity of phagocytes and NK cells, which increases the risk of infectious complications. Nicotine reduces the synthesis of pro-inflammatory cytokines, the expression of costimulatory molecules, which leads to the disturbance of the antigen presentation to T-cells. As a result, anergy of cellular and humoral immunity is observed. Perhaps the effect of nicotine on the immune system explains the flaccid, progressive course of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease associated with smoking (regaredless of infectious exacerbation). The participation of autoimmune reactions in the genesis of the disease makes the process irreversible.