Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Novel Molecule May Contribute To Intestinal Health

Date:
March 14, 2003
Source:
Washington University School Of Medicine
Summary:
New data suggests that a novel molecule appears to be involved in the intestine’s response to infection. The study was a collaboration between researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the Institut Curie in Paris.

St. Louis, March 13, 2003 — New data suggests that a novel molecule appears to be involved in the intestine’s response to infection. The study was a collaboration between researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the Institut Curie in Paris. It appears in the March 13 issue of the journal Nature.

Related Articles


“This is the first identified function for this molecule,” says co-senior author Susan Gilfillan, Ph.D., research instructor in pathology and immunology at the School of Medicine. “Our findings suggest that this molecule may play a fundamental role in gut immunology.”

When a virus enters the body, proteins called antigens appear on the surface of cells and alert the immune system to infection. A molecule called MR1, which was discovered eight years ago, appears to be very similar to the main category of molecules that deliver antigens to the cell surface, called major histocompatibility complex class I (MHC Class I). However, its function is not yet understood.

To learn more about MR1, Gilfillan and colleagues developed a strain of mice lacking the molecule. The mice failed to develop a small population of immune cells known as mucosal-associated invariant t cells (MAIT cells). MAIT cells were just recently discovered by the study’s other co-senior author, Olivier Lantz, Ph.D., at the Institut Curie in Paris. The current study presents the first extensive characterization of these cells.

“These results help us begin to understand the function of MR1 and the role of MAIT cells in immunology,” Gilfillan says. “Both are found not only in mice but also in humans and other animals, such as cows, which implies that they probably are very important.”

The team also discovered that MAIT cells appear to be primarily located in the mucous membrane of the intestine, or gut. Moreover, mice lacking bacteria normally found in the gut do not have MAIT cells.

From these results, Gilfillan and colleagues conclude that MAIT cells rely on both MR1 and intestinal bacteria. In addition, the results imply that MR1 and MAIT cells play a critical role in the intestine’s response to infection. The team plans to continue investigating these interactions and also to explore whether MR1 and MAIT are involved in fighting infections in other organs lined with mucous-producing cells, including the lungs.

“It’s possible that MR1 and MAIT cells are involved in a variety of diseases of the gut, particularly those relating to microorganisms that reside in the intestine,” Gilfillan says. “We also expect this line of research will be of particular interest for general mucosal immunology, and may prove useful in studying other organ systems as well.”

###

Treiner E, Duban L, Bahram S, Radosavljevic M, Wanner V, Tilloy F, Affaticati P, Gilfillan S, Lantz O. Selection of evolutionarily conserved mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells by MR1. Nature, March 13, 2003.

Funding from Association de la Recherche Contre la Cander, Fondation de la recherché Medicale, INSERM and Section Medicale de l’Institut Curie supported this research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Washington University School Of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Washington University School Of Medicine. "Novel Molecule May Contribute To Intestinal Health." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 March 2003. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030314070806.htm>.
Washington University School Of Medicine. (2003, March 14). Novel Molecule May Contribute To Intestinal Health. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030314070806.htm
Washington University School Of Medicine. "Novel Molecule May Contribute To Intestinal Health." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/03/030314070806.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) — It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) — More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) — In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) — As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins