Previous studies have indicated a link between respiratory symptoms and diseases and organic dust exposure in agricultural workers. The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), a transcription factor activated by a wide variety of exogenous and endogenous compounds, is known to be involved in the metabolism of toxic chemicals and recently in the modulation of immune and inflammatory responses. To better understand mechanisms of pathogenesis of respiratory symptoms and diseases, the role of AhR in the regulation of induction of inflammatory mediators by poultry organic dust extract in airway epithelial cells was studied. The role of AhR was studied by investigating the effects of organic dust extract on AhR nuclear translocation and the effects of AhR silencing on the organic dust extract induction of proinflammatory mediators IL-1􏰀, ICAM- 1, IL-6 and IL-8. Our studies showed that AhR translocation is increased by organic dust extract indicating AhR activation and AhR silencing inhibited induction of inflammatory mediators by organic dust extract. Collectively, our studies showed that AhR positively regulates induction of inflammatory mediators in airway epithelial cells by organic dust.

Date of publication

Spring 2022

Document Type




Persistent identifier


Committee members

Usha Pendurthi, Nagarjun Konduru, Sachin Mulik


Master’s of Science