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Scientists make major breakthrough in understanding inflammation

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Scientists make major breakthrough in understanding inflammationTrinity College Dublin

  • The action of cells that spark inflammation causes a ‘re-wiring’ of their mitochondria, which amplifies the inflammation response
  • Targeting the cells responsible for the initial spark may keep the process under control and offer new treatment options for a host or inflammatory diseases

 

Scientists have made a major breakthrough in understanding the workings of the cellular machinery involved in a host of inflammatory diseases. Their discovery opens the door to potential new therapies if they are able to target specific cells and keep our natural inflammation response under control.

The scientists found that ‘macrophage’ cells, when activated, re-wire energy powerhouses called ‘mitochondria’ to amplify the response – sometimes to the point that a normal bodily reaction to infection or injury is way over the top.

This elevated response is implicated in a number of inflammatory diseases, such as arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease and septic shock.

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