Nerve growth factor (NGF) is over-expressed in patients with lung inflammatory diseases including airway virus infections. Optimum airway surface liquid (ASL), controlled by epithelial cells, is essential for normal lung function. NGF has been shown to affect ion transport properties of neurons, but no information is available as to the effect NGF has on ion transport of airway epithelial cells. To investigate if NGF can alter epithelial ion transport, we established human primary cultured epithelial cells in air-interface that demonstrates desirable in situ morphology and ion transport function. These cells were placed in an Ussing chamber to obtain transepithelial voltage (Vt), short-circuit current (Isc), transepithelial resistance (Rt), and to measure responses to known ion transport inhibitors. Cells had an average Vt of -7.1 mV, Isc of 5.9 µA, and Rt of 750 µxcm2. Amiloride (apical, 3.5x10-5 M) decreased total /sc by 52%. When cells were first treated with 1 ng/ml NGF prior to the addition of amiloride, amiloride reduced total /sc by 38%. The addition of NGF (apical, 1 ng/ml) to the bath reduced the total Isc by 4.5 %. These results indicate that NGF reduces Na+ transport in airway epithelial cells. This could result in an increase in ASL height. Support provided by NIOSH.