The goal of this graduate project is to develop a unique in vitro “cell monolayer” –based assay system to study lung epithelial inflammation and barrier damage in response to cigarette smokes and pharmaceutical aerosols. Air-interface cultured and confluent monolayers of human lung epithelial cells, Calu-3, will be used, alongside transient transfection with an inflammation-related transcription factor, NFкB. Specifically, the project will pursue the following two aims: 1. To characterize induced epithelial inflammation and barrier nature of the Calu-3 monolayers in response to cigarette smoke deposition; 2. To assess anti-inflammatory actions of inhaled corticosteroids upon their aerosol deposition on the Calu-3 monolayers.