Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Experimental treatment for COPD in development

Date:
April 14, 2011
Source:
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Summary:
Researchers have developed a non-steroid based strategy for improving the lung's innate immune defense and decreasing inflammation that can be a problem for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In a study, researchers targeted the Nrf2 pathway using sulforaphane, an ingredient that is present in broccoli in a precursor form, to enhance the Nrf2 pathway in the lung that mediates the uptake of bacteria.

Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have developed a non-steroid based strategy for improving the lung's innate immune defense and decreasing inflammation that can be a problem for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In a study published in the April 13 edition of the journal Science Translational Medicine, the Johns Hopkins researchers targeted the Nrf2 pathway using sulforaphane, an ingredient that is present in broccoli in a precursor form, to enhance the Nrf2 pathway in the lung that mediates the uptake of bacteria.

Related Articles


Exacerbation of symptoms due to bacterial lung infection is a common problem for many COPD patients. The current study used inflammatory cells from lungs of COPD patients and mice. The experimental therapy is also being studied in a clinical trial.

COPD is major public health problem for both the developed and the developing world. Characterized by chronic bronchitis and emphysema, COPD is the third leading cause of death in the US. COPD affects 24 million Americans and 210 million worldwide. Current treatments are largely symptomatic and supportive, but do not reverse the underlying biological defect in the lung.

For the study, the researchers examined macrophages -- white blood cells that kill bacteria -- isolated from lungs of COPD patients. The researchers also examined mice exposed to cigarette smoke, which mimicked the immunocompromised conditions in the lungs of COPD patients. The study showed that sulforaphane could increase expression of receptors that improve macrophage phagocytic function. However, further study is needed to determine if a sulforaphane-rich diet could be an effective treatment.

"Our findings suggest that macrophages from the lungs of patients with COPD have a defect in a process called phagocytosis involved in the uptake of bacteria. We discovered that activation of the Nrf2 pathway induced by sulforaphane restored the ability of lung macrophages to bind and take up bacteria," said Shyam Biswal, PhD, professor in the Bloomberg School's Department of Environmental Health Sciences and senior author of the study. "The study provides proof of concept that activating the Nrf2 pathway can restore the ability of macrophage to phagocytose, or bind with bacteria, and clear it from the lungs of patients with COPD."

"This research may help explain the long-established link between diet and lung disease, and raises the potential for new approaches to treatment of this often devastating disease," said Robert Wise, MD, co-author of the study and professor of Medicine in the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

The research was funded by National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Specialized Centers of Clinically Oriented Research grant, the Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute, and the Dorney-Koppel Family Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. C. J. Harvey, R. K. Thimmulappa, S. Sethi, X. Kong, L. Yarmus, R. H. Brown, D. Feller-Kopman, R. Wise, S. Biswal. Targeting Nrf2 Signaling Improves Bacterial Clearance by Alveolar Macrophages in Patients with COPD and in a Mouse Model. Science Translational Medicine, 2011; 3 (78): 78ra32 DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3002042

Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Experimental treatment for COPD in development." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110413151625.htm>.
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. (2011, April 14). Experimental treatment for COPD in development. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110413151625.htm
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. "Experimental treatment for COPD in development." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110413151625.htm (accessed November 29, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

Rural India's Low-Cost Sanitary Pad Revolution

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — One man hopes his invention -– a machine that produces cheap sanitary pads –- will help empower Indian women. Duration: 01:51 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

Research on Bats Could Help Develop Drugs Against Ebola

AFP (Nov. 28, 2014) — In Africa's only biosafety level 4 laboratory, scientists have been carrying out experiments on bats to understand how virus like Ebola are being transmitted, and how some of them resist to it. Duration: 01:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

WHO Says Male Ebola Survivors Should Abstain From Sex

Newsy (Nov. 28, 2014) — WHO cites four studies that say Ebola can still be detected in semen up to 82 days after the onset of symptoms. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
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