Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Potential New Way To Block Inflammation In Autoimmune Disease Discovered

Date:
June 24, 2008
Source:
NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
Summary:
Researchers have identified a promising new target for autoimmune disease treatment -- a cell-surface receptor called DR3. Their research in mice, published in Immunity, suggests that blocking this receptor could slow or stop the damaging inflammation characteristic of autoimmune diseases, potentially without leaving the body vulnerable to serious infections, as many current therapies do.

Researchers from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), have identified a promising new target for autoimmune disease treatment -- a cell-surface receptor called DR3. Their research in mice suggests that blocking this receptor could slow or stop the damaging inflammation characteristic of autoimmune diseases, potentially without leaving the body vulnerable to serious infections, as many current therapies do.

Related Articles


DR3 is a protein on the surface of cells. It is a member of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) family of receptors, which bind to molecules related to TNF, a cell-signaling protein that promotes inflammation. Many of today's most potent treatments for inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis, interfere with the action of TNF, thereby blocking inflammation. Since current anti-TNF therapies don't work in all autoimmune diseases, however, the researchers turned to the study of DR3, which is a close relative of TNFR1, the main receptor for TNF.

Working with mouse models of asthma and multiple sclerosis, both immune system diseases, the researchers found that mice engineered to lack DR3 were resistant to those diseases. "The implication is that blocking DR3 in mice, and possibly in humans, is a potential therapy for these diseases and perhaps others in which the immune system goes awry," said Richard Siegel, M.D., Ph.D., a scientist in the NIAMS' Immunoregulation Group, who led the research effort.

While closely related to TNFR1, DR3 is expressed in T cells, a different kind of immune cell (a white blood cell that identifies and fights infection) than those that express TNFR1, Dr. Siegel said. The NIAMS group collaborated with a laboratory in Cardiff, Wales, which had generated genetically engineered mice deficient in DR3, as well as with a research group at the NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which has developed mouse models of disease with strong T cell components, such as asthma and multiple sclerosis. "These findings open up new avenues for therapy of these two diseases as well as to other autoimmune diseases in which T cells play a role in causing or perpetuating the disease," said Siegel.

The researchers hope that DR3-blocking agents will be effective anti-inflammatory treatments someday. Siegel noted that if they were to be used in rheumatic diseases, they would be a complement to strategies that block TNF because they hit a different arm of the immune system. "It could be potentially synergistic or complementary," he said.

Of critical importance, the NIAMS scientists found that removing DR3 did not appear to suppress the immune response or the ability to fight infection within the mice -- a problem with many other treatments for autoimmune disease. "We could see the effect of DR3 deficiency in the diseased organ, but when we looked systemically at the immune response at other places in the mouse, it was barely affected," said Dr. Siegel.

The group's findings suggest that DR3-blocking agents might be more effective at specifically treating autoimmune disease without breaking down the body's defenses against infections, a long-sought goal of researchers in the field.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Meylan F, et al. The TNF-family receptor DR3 is essential for diverse T cell-mediated inflammatory diseases. Immunity, 29, 1-11, July 2008

Cite This Page:

NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. "Potential New Way To Block Inflammation In Autoimmune Disease Discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619120657.htm>.
NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. (2008, June 24). Potential New Way To Block Inflammation In Autoimmune Disease Discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619120657.htm
NIH/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. "Potential New Way To Block Inflammation In Autoimmune Disease Discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080619120657.htm (accessed November 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

WFP: Ebola Risks Heightened Among Women Throughout Africa

AFP (Nov. 21, 2014) Having children has always been a frightening prospect in Sierra Leone, the world's most dangerous place to give birth, but Ebola has presented an alarming new threat for expectant mothers. Duration: 00:37 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Could Your Genes Be The Reason You're Single?

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers in Beijing discovered a gene called 5-HTA1, and carriers are reportedly 20 percent more likely to be single. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

Raw: Paralyzed Marine Walks With Robotic Braces

AP (Nov. 21, 2014) Marine Corps officials say a special operations officer left paralyzed by a sniper's bullet in Afghanistan walked using robotic leg braces in a ceremony to award him a Bronze Star. (Nov. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Milestone Birthdays Can Bring Existential Crisis, Study Says

Newsy (Nov. 21, 2014) Researchers find that as people approach new decades in their lives they make bigger life decisions. Video provided by Newsy
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