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Scientists discover body protection shield


Scientists discover body protection shield

Image of a fly wound and inflammation. Credit: Helen Weavers

Scientists have found a way to manipulate the body's own immune response to increase tissue repair. The results, published in Current Biology today, unveil a new network of protective factors to protect cells from damage. This finding, made by researchers at the University of Bristol, could significantly benefit patients undergoing surgery, accelerating recovery times and lowering the risk of complications.

When tissue is damaged (accidentally or through surgery), the body quickly recruits immune cells to the site of injury, where it fights infection by engaging and killing invading pathogens by releasing toxic factors (such as unstable molecules that contain known as "reactive oxygen species" (eg peroxides). However, these bactericidal products are also highly toxic to host tissue and may disrupt the repair process. To counteract these ill effects, repair tissue activates a powerful protective mechanism to "protect" itself from damage.

Now researchers at Bristol School of Biochemistry, studying tissue repair, have mapped out the exact identities of these pathways of protection and identified how to stimulate this process in naive tissues.

Dr. Helen Weavers of Bristol College of Life Sciences and lead author of the study explains: "In healthy individuals, injured tissues usually repair quickly after damage. Within a wound on the healed skin, it is activated. a stress response that recruits inflammatory cells, which in turn release a multitude of bacteriocidal factors, including reactive oxygen species (ROS), to eliminate invading pathogens.

"In this study, we used translucent fruit flies to assist in the repair of live wounds and to track the behavior of recruited immune cells. In doing so, we discovered a network of protective pathways that protect tissues from inflammatory damage and make repair tissues more. " We also demonstrated that the ectopic activation of these pathways further enhanced tissue protection, while their inhibition led to significant delays in wound closure.

"Now that we know their identities and how they are activated, we hope to develop ways to stimulate this protective mechanism in patients before elective surgery."

The results have clear clinical relevance for patients because the therapeutic activation of these cytoprotective pathways in the clinic may also offer an interesting approach to preconditioning. patients' tissues before elective surgery.

Dr. Weavers added: "Now we are discovering even more ways of 'resilience' that help protect body tissues from stress, both at injury sites and other vulnerable organs that are often exposed. As we have found that protection If machinery is activated by the same pathways that also initiate the inflammatory response, we believe that the resilience mechanism has evolved as a fail-safe mechanism for tissue protection whenever inflammation is triggered.

Adult Fly Intestine Can Help Understand Intestinal Regeneration

More information:
Helen Weavers et al. Injury activates a dynamic cytoprotective network to impart stress resilience and repair repairs, Current Biology (2019). DOI: 10.1016 / j.cub.2019.09.035

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Bristol University

Scientists discover the body's protective shield (2019, November 18)
consulted November 18, 2019

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