Pulmonary Pharmacology & Therapeutics
Bradykinin 1 receptor (B1R) signalling pathways may be involved in the inflammatory pathophysiology of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). B1R signalling is induced by inflammatory stimuli or tissue injury and leads to activation and increased migration of pro-inflammatory cells. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) lung challenge in man is an experimental method of exploring inflammation in the lung whereby interference in these pathways can help to assess pharmacologic interventions in COPD. BI 1026706, a potent B1R antagonist, was hypothesized to reduce the inflammatory activity after segmental lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenge in humans due to decreased pulmonary cell influx.In a monocentric, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group, phase I trial, 57 healthy, smoking subjects were treated for 28 days with either oral BI 1026706 100 mg bid or placebo. At day 21, turbo-inversion recovery magnitude magnetic resonance imaging (TIRM MRI) was performed. On the last day of treatment, pre-challenge bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BAL) and biopsies were sampled, followed by segmental LPS challenge (40 endotoxin units/kg body weight) and saline control instillation in different lung lobes. Twenty-four hours later, TIRM MRI was performed, then BAL and biopsies were collected from the challenged segments. In BAL samples, cells were differentiated for neutrophil numbers as the primary endpoint. Other endpoints included assessment of safety, biomarkers in BAL (e.g. interleukin-8 [IL-8], albumin and total protein), B1R expression in lung biopsies and TIRM score by MRI as a measure for the extent of pulmonary oedema.After LPS, but not after saline, high numbers of inflammatory cells, predominantly neutrophils were observed in the airways. IL-8, albumin and total protein were also increased in BAL samples after LPS challenge as compared with saline control. There were no significant differences in cells or other biomarkers from BAL in volunteers treated with BI 1026706 compared with those treated with placebo. Unexpectedly, neutrophil numbers in BAL were 30% higher and MRI-derived extent of oedema was significantly higher with BI 1026706 treatment compared with placebo, 24 h after LPS challenge. Adverse events were mainly mild to moderate and not different between treatment groups.Treatment with BI 1026706 for four weeks was safe and well-tolerated in healthy smoking subjects. BI 1026706 100 mg bid did not provide evidence for anti-inflammatory effects in the human bronchial LPS challenge model.The study was registered on January 14, 2016 at ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02657408).