News

AddToAny

Google+ Facebook Twitter Twitter

Helpful and harmful gut immune cells

A type of immune cell that contributes to inflammatory bowel disease exists in two forms – “good” and “bad”.

p10-13-news-colon-perforation-science-photo-library-c0393124.jpg

These two populations are akin to worker and soldier ants, playing different roles depending on their context.

The “worker ant” population of immune cells is found naturally in the gut and helps keep the lining of the intestines healthy. The other population is triggered in response to infection by a pathogen.

Similar to soldier ants, these immune cells are called in to help fight infection, travelling from lymph nodes to the gut and other parts of the body to attack the invading pathogens. Although they are necessary to fight infection, these cells can cause excessive inflammation.

Studying the differences between these two cell populations in mice, a multidisciplinary research team has revealed potential ways to target the cells associated with immune-inflammatory diseases, while sparing the ones that help keep the gut healthy.  

 

Image credit | Science Photo Library 

Related Articles

p10-13-news-prostate-cancer-science-photo-library-f0236971.jpg

New barometer for inflammatory disease

A unique discovery about the nature of neutrophils may lead to new models for diagnosing and tracking inflammatory diseases such as cancer and osteoarthritis. 

sarah_may_bw_0.jpg

What’s in a name?

The role of the biomedical scientist has evolved, but more work is needed to change public awareness.

Autoimmunity symposium

Autoimmunity symposium

To celebrate the launch of the Zenit PRO, Menarini Diagnostics hosted an Autoimmunity symposium. This was attended by scientific staff from across the country despite very challenging weather conditions. The following is an account by Ms Amani Elhouderi of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust; reflecting on the day’s events.

Fungus might play role in Crohn’s disease

A fungus commonly found in human hair follicles also resides in the gut and might play a role in Crohn’s disease, it is reported.

Top