Abstract by Daniel Poulson
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Pam Van Ry
Using Acid Reflux to Cause Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis in Mice
Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) is a fibrotic lung condition that affects 100,000 people annually in the United States. IPF is highly correlated with gastroesophageal reflux (GER), as 87% of patients diagnosed with IPF also have chronic GER. We hypothesize that chronic, subclinical levels of micro-aspirated gastric juices injure the lungs and can result in fibrosis. To test this mechanism, mice were aspirated with simulated intestinal fluid with active pepsin (SIF+P) for 7 days. Mice were run on an incline until exhaustion, correlating to the six-minute walk test of IPF patients. HR-μCT scans were conducted weekly to monitor lung volume and density. 21 days after initial treatment, the mice underwent a tracheostomy and were connected to a FlexiVent, which runs a comprehensive lung mechanics test. Data collected from these various endpoints suggests that SIF+P causes a functional phenotype typical of fibrotic patients, and as such indicates SIF+P micro-aspirations could be used as a physiological murine model for IPF.