Immune cells cause inflammation by destroying anti-inflammatory protein

June 22nd, 2008 - 2:14 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, June 22 (ANI): Researchers at the Max-Planck-Institute of Neurobiology, Germany, have shown that immune cells, called Neutrophils, cause inflammation by destroying an anti-inflammatory molecule known as PGRN.

Neutrophils are the first cells of the immune system to respond to invading microorganisms by internalising and destroying them using proteins known as neutrophil serine proteases (NSPs).

While neutrophils are considered the “good guys” in such circumstances, they also contribute to the noninfectious chronic inflammation that underlies various diseases, including autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.

However, it is still not known what role does NSPs play in noninfectious chronic inflammation.

The scientists used mice lacking two very similar NSPs, PR3 and NE, and showed that these two NSPs have a crucial role in one form of noninfectious chronic inflammation.

After a close analysis it was found that PR3 and NE destroy an anti-inflammatory molecule known as PGRN and in this way help to promote inflammation in the absence of invading microorganisms.

This led the authors to suggest that these data provide rationale for considering inhibitors of NSPs as anti-inflammatory drugs. (ANI)

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