To investigate the effects of mucokinetic drugs on the rheological properties of human nasal mucus in patients with chronic sinusitis.
We reconstituted human nasal mucus obtained from 74 patients with chronic sinusitis and determined the effects of 4 mucokinetic drugs, including acetylcysteine, deoxynuclease I, 2% sodium bicarbonate, and a combination product containing tyloxapol (Alevaire), on rheological properties of reconstituted human nasal mucus (RHNM). We used 5% RHNM dissolved in phosphate-buffered solution as the optimal buffer and concentration of RHNM for the study because it showed a viscoelastic response similar to that of freshly collected nasal mucus from patients with chronic sinusitis.
Four experiments were performed to determine the influence of each drug on dynamic viscosity and elasticity of 5% RHNM. Distilled water was used as a control.
Acetylcysteine and deoxynuclease I significantly decreased both dynamic viscosity and elastic modulus, while distilled water had no effect on rheological properties of 5% RHNM in vitro. Alevaire significantly reduced both dynamic viscosity and elastic modulus. Sodium bicarbonate significantly reduced elastic modulus but not dynamic viscosity. Reduction of elastic modulus by Alevaire was significantly greater than that by sodium bicarbonate, while there was no difference in reduction of dynamic viscosity between them.
Our results indicate that RHNM may be useful for studying the topical effects of various drugs on nasal mucus from patients with chronic sinusitis.