Bronchoalveolar coagulation and fibrinolysis in endotoxemia and pneumonia

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ObjectivesTo review the involvement of coagulation and fibrinolysis in the pathogenesis of acute lung injury during severe infection. To review the cross-talk between coagulation and inflammation that may affect this response.Data SourcesPublished articles on experimental and clinical studies of coagulation and fibrinolysis during infection, inflammation, acute lung injury, and evolving acute respiratory distress syndrome.ConclusionsFibrin deposition is an important feature of pulmonary infection or severe inflammation. The mechanisms that contribute to this fibrin deposition are bronchoalveolar tissue factor-mediated thrombin generation and localized depression of urokinase plasminogen activator-mediated fibrinolysis, caused by the increase of plasminogen activator inhibitors. These effects on pulmonary coagulation and fibrinolysis are regulated by various proinflammatory cytokines. Rather than being a unidirectional relationship, the interaction between inflammation and coagulation involves significant cross-talk. Coagulation and fibrinolytic proteins may have an additional role beyond fibrin turnover and inflammation, e.g., in mechanisms mediating cell recruitment and migration.

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