Attenuation of pulmonary damage in aged lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammation mice through continuous 2 % hydrogen gas inhalation: A potential therapeutic strategy for geriatric inflammation and survival

Introduction: With the global population aging, there is an increased prevalence of sepsis among the elderly, a demographic particularly susceptible to inflammation. This study aimed to evaluate the therapeutic potential of hydrogen gas, known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, in attenuating inflammation specifically in the lungs and liver, and age-associated molecular markers in aged mice. Methods: Male mice aged 21 to 23 months, representative of the human elderly population, were subjected to inflammation via intraperitoneal injection of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). The mice were allocated into eight groups to examine the effects of varying durations and concentrations of hydrogen gas inhalation: control, saline without hydrogen, saline with 24-hour 2 % hydrogen, LPS without hydrogen, LPS with 24-hour 2 % hydrogen, LPS with 6-hour 2 % hydrogen, LPS with 1-hour 2 % hydrogen, and LPS with 24-hour 1 % hydrogen. Parameters assessed included survival rate, activity level, inflammatory biomarkers, and organ injury. Results: Extended administration of hydrogen gas specifically at a 2 % concentration for 24 h led to a favorable prognosis in the aged mice by reducing mRNA expression of inflammatory biomarkers in lung and liver tissue, mitigating lung injury, and diminishing the expression of the senescence-associated protein p21. Moreover, hydrogen gas inhalation selectively ameliorated senescence-related markers in lung tissue, including C-X-C motif chemokine 2, metalloproteinase-3, and arginase-1. Notably, hydrogen gas did not alleviate LPS-induced liver injury under the conditions tested. Conclusion: The study highlights that continuous inhalation of hydrogen gas at a 2 % concentration for 24 h can be a potent intervention in the geriatric population for improving survival and physical activity by mitigating pulmonary inflammation and modulating senescence-related markers in aged mice with LPS-induced inflammation. This finding paves the way for future research into hydrogen gas as a therapeutic strategy to alleviate severe inflammation that can lead to organ damage in the elderly.

Hydrogen inhalation attenuates lung contusion after blunt chest trauma in mice

Background: Lung contusion caused by blunt chest trauma evokes a severe inflammatory reaction in the pulmonary parenchyma that may be associated with acute respiratory distress syndrome. Although hydrogen gas has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and is protective against multiple types of lung injury at safe concentrations, the effects of inhaled hydrogen gas on blunt lung injury have not been previously investigated. Therefore, using a mouse model, we tested the hypothesis that hydrogen inhalation after chest trauma would reduce pulmonary inflammation and acute lung injury associated with lung contusion. Methods: Inbred male C57BL/6 mice were randomly divided into 3 groups: sham with air inhalation, lung contusion with air inhalation, and lung contusion with 1.3% hydrogen inhalation. Experimental lung contusion was induced using a highly reproducible and standardized apparatus. Immediately after induction of lung contusion, mice were placed in a chamber exposed to 1.3% hydrogen gas in the air. Histopathological analysis and real-time polymerase chain reaction in lung tissue and blood gas analysis were performed 6 hours after contusion. Results: Histopathological examination of the lung tissue after contusion revealed perivascular/intra-alveolar hemorrhage, perivascular/interstitial leukocyte infiltration, and interstitial/intra-alveolar edema. These histological changes and the extent of lung contusion, as determined by computed tomography, were significantly mitigated by hydrogen inhalation. Hydrogen inhalation also significantly reduced inflammatory cytokine and chemokine mRNA levels and improved oxygenation. Conclusion: Hydrogen inhalation therapy significantly mitigated inflammatory responses associated with lung contusion in mice. Hydrogen inhalation therapy may be a supplemental therapeutic strategy for treating lung contusion.

The effects of inhaling hydrogen gas on macrophage polarization, fibrosis, and lung function in mice with bleomycin-induced lung injury

Background: Acute respiratory distress syndrome, which is caused by acute lung injury, is a destructive respiratory disorder caused by a systemic inflammatory response. Persistent inflammation results in irreversible alveolar fibrosis. Because hydrogen gas possesses anti-inflammatory properties, we hypothesized that daily repeated inhalation of hydrogen gas could suppress persistent lung inflammation by inducing functional changes in macrophages, and consequently inhibit lung fibrosis during late-phase lung injury. Methods: To test this hypothesis, lung injury was induced in mice by intratracheal administration of bleomycin (1.0 mg/kg). Mice were exposed to control gas (air) or hydrogen (3.2% in air) for 6 h every day for 7 or 21 days. Respiratory physiology, tissue pathology, markers of inflammation, and macrophage phenotypes were examined. Results: Mice with bleomycin-induced lung injury that received daily hydrogen therapy for 21 days (BH group) exhibited higher static compliance (0.056 mL/cmH2O, 95% CI 0.047-0.064) than mice with bleomycin-induced lung injury exposed only to air (BA group; 0.042 mL/cmH2O, 95% CI 0.031-0.053, p = 0.02) and lower static elastance (BH 18.8 cmH2O/mL, [95% CI 15.4-22.2] vs. BA 26.7 cmH2O/mL [95% CI 19.6-33.8], p = 0.02). When the mRNA levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines were examined 7 days after bleomycin administration, interleukin (IL)-6, IL-4 and IL-13 were significantly lower in the BH group than in the BA group. There were significantly fewer M2-biased macrophages in the alveolar interstitium of the BH group than in the BA group (3.1% [95% CI 1.6-4.5%] vs. 1.1% [95% CI 0.3-1.8%], p = 0.008). Conclusions: The results suggest that hydrogen inhalation inhibits the deterioration of respiratory physiological function and alveolar fibrosis in this model of lung injury.

Intraperitoneally administered, hydrogen-rich physiologic solution protects against postoperative ileus and is associated with reduced nitric oxide production

Background: Postoperative ileus, a transient impairment of bowel motility initiated by intestinal inflammation, is common after an abdominal operation and leads to increased hospital stays and costs. Hydrogen has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and potential therapeutic value. Solubilized hydrogen may be a portable and practical means of administering therapeutic hydrogen gas. We hypothesized that intraperitoneal administration of hydrogen-rich saline would ameliorate postoperative ileus. Methods: Ileus was induced via surgical manipulation in mice and rats. The peritoneal cavity was filled with 1.0 mL saline or hydrogen-rich saline (≥1.5-2.0 ppm) before closure of the abdominal incision. Intestinal transit was assessed 24 hours postoperatively. Inflammation was examined by quantitation of neutrophil extravasation and expression of proinflammatory markers. Nitric oxide production was assessed in cultured muscularis propria. Results: Surgical manipulation resulted in a marked delay in intestinal transit and was associated with upregulation of proinflammatory cytokines and increased neutrophil extravasation. Bowel dysmotility, induced by surgical manipulation and inflammatory events, was significantly attenuated by intra-abdominal administration of hydrogen-rich saline. Nitric oxide production in the muscle layers of the bowel was inhibited by hydrogen treatment. Conclusion: A single intraperitoneal dose of hydrogen-rich saline ameliorates postoperative ileus by inhibiting the inflammatory response and suppressing nitric oxide production.

Luminal preloading with hydrogen-rich saline ameliorates ischemia-reperfusion injury following intestinal transplantation in rats

Prolonged intestinal cold storage causes considerable mucosal breakdown, which could bolster bacterial translocation and cause life-threatening infection for the transplant recipient. The intestine has an intraluminal compartment, which could be a target for intervention, but has not yet been fully investigated. Hydrogen gas exerts organ protection and has used been recently in several clinical and basic research studies on topics including intestinal transplantation. In this study, we aimed to investigate the cytoprotective efficacy of intraluminally administered hydrogen-rich saline on cold IR injury in intestinal transplantation. Isogeneic intestinal transplantation with 6 hours of cold ischemia was performed on Lewis rats. Hydrogen-rich saline (H2 concentration at 5 ppm) or normal saline was intraluminally introduced immediately before preservation. Graft intestine was excised 3 hours after reperfusion and analyzed. Histopathological analysis of control grafts revealed blunting of the villi and erosion. These mucosal changes were notably attenuated by intraluminal hydrogen. Intestinal mucosa damage caused by IR injury led to considerable deterioration of gut barrier function 3 h post-reperfusion. However, this decline in permeability was critically prevented by hydrogen treatment. IR-induced upregulation of proinflammatory cytokine mRNAs such as IL-6 was mitigated by hydrogen treatment. Western blot revealed that hydrogen treatment regulated loss of the transmembrane protein ZO-1. Hydrogen-rich saline intraluminally administered in the graft intestine modulated IR injury to transplanted intestine in rats. Successful abrogation of intestinal IR injury with a novel strategy using intraluminal hydrogen may be easily clinically applicable and will compellingly improve patient care after transplantation.