Jones, R., Baetjer, A. M., and Reid, L. (1971).Brit. J. industr. Med.,28, 369-373. Effect of extremes of temperature and humidity on the goblet cell count in the rat airway epithelium. To investigate the effect of environmental temperature and humidity on the goblet cells in the rat airway epithelium, eight animals were exposed for four to five weeks to each of the following conditions: normal; hot-moist or tropical; hot-dry or desert; and cold. The animals in the three groups exposed to abnormal atmospheric conditions failed to gain weight as fast as those in the control group. No increase in the number or area of goblet cells was found in any group, although with irritants previously tested, such as tobacco smoke, a marked increase has been found in this time. It would seem that climatic effects are much less important than irritation in the production of hypertrophy and hyperplasia of mucus-secreting cells, the hallmark of chronic bronchitis.
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