Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are believed to be involved in the pathogenesis of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), and MMP-7 has been described as a useful biomarker for IPF. However, little is known regarding the significance of MMP-10 as a biomarker for IPF.
This observational cohort study included 57 patients with IPF. Serum MMPs were comprehensively measured in all patients, and the relationships between these markers and both disease severity and prognosis were evaluated. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) MMP-7 and -10 levels were measured in 19 patients to investigate the correlation between these markers and their corresponding serum values. Immunohistochemical staining for MMP-10 was also performed in IPF lung tissue.
Serum MMP-7 and -10 levels correlated significantly with both the percentage of predicted forced vital capacity (ρ = -0.31, p = 0.02 and ρ = -0.34, p < 0.01, respectively) and the percentage of predicted diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (ρ = -0.32, p = 0.02 and ρ = -0.43, p < 0.01, respectively). BALF MMP-7 and -10 levels correlated with their corresponding serum concentrations. Only serum MMP-10 predicted clinical deterioration within 6 months and overall survival. In IPF lungs, the expression of MMP-10 was enhanced and localized to the alveolar epithelial cells, macrophages, and peripheral bronchiolar epithelial cells.
MMP-10 may be a novel biomarker reflecting both disease severity and prognosis in patients with IPF.