American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major worldwide health problem that has an increasing prevalence and mortality (1, 2). Oxidative stress, which can be defined as an increased exposure to oxidants and/or decreased antioxidant capacities, is widely recognized as a central feature of many diseases (3, 4). Considerable evidence now links COPD with increased oxidative stress (5, 6). The purpose of this review is to describe the role and origin of the oxidant-antioxidant disturbances that participate in the development of COPD. Our presentation also addresses ways of assessing the contribution of oxidants and identifies therapeutic approaches that could improve cellular oxidant-antioxidant balance in the lungs of COPD patients.