Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Important control mechanism behind autoimmune diseases discovered

Date:
March 1, 2013
Source:
Karolinska Institutet
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a new control mechanism in our immune system. The discovery is of potential significance to the treatment of serious diseases such as MS (multiple sclerosis), rheumatoid arthritis, and SLE (Systemic lupus erythematosus).

Researchers at the Swedish medical university Karolinska Institutet have discovered a new control mechanism in our immune system. The discovery is of potential significance to the treatment of serious diseases such as MS (multiple sclerosis), rheumatoid arthritis, and SLE (Systemic lupus erythematosus).

Related Articles


"Now that we've started to understand the regulatory mechanisms involved in these autoimmune diseases, we are hopeful that new treatments can be found," says Mikael Karlsson, associate professor at the Department of Medicine at Karolinska Institutet in Solna, and one of the team behind the study now published in the highly reputed periodical, The Journal of Experimental Medicine.

An important component of our immune defence is a type of cell called a B cell. Normally, the job of these cells is to produce antibodies, which in turn bind to and neutralise invasive microorganisms, such as bacteria and viruses. In people with an autoimmune disease, explains Dr Karlsson, these B cells actually have an injurious effect and instead of serving the body, are activated against its own tissues, which they start to break down.

Patients with SLE and other autoimmune diseases have lower levels of so-called NKT cells. Previously, it was not known what part these cells play in the origin and development of the disease; now, however, the research group at KI has shown that this deficiency is a contributory pathogenic factor.

"We've demonstrated that NKT cells can regulate how B cells become activated against healthy tissue, and that a lack of NKT cells results in greater misguided B cell activation," says Dr Karlsson. "So now we can mechanically link the NKT cell defect in patients to the disease."

The study also shows that the NKT cells directly impede faulty B cell activation, and that they do so early in the misdirected process. The team managed to inhibit the activity of pathogenic B cells by adding NKT cells -- a result that may one day lead to new types of treatment.

"This means that new treatments specifically targeting the protective NKT cells can help this patient group," concludes Dr Karlsson.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Karolinska Institutet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. F. Wermeling, S. M. Lind, E. D. Jordo, S. L. Cardell, M. C. I. Karlsson. Invariant NKT cells limit activation of autoreactive CD1d-positive B cells. Journal of Experimental Medicine, 2010; 207 (5): 943 DOI: 10.1084/jem.20091314

Cite This Page:

Karolinska Institutet. "Important control mechanism behind autoimmune diseases discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130301085633.htm>.
Karolinska Institutet. (2013, March 1). Important control mechanism behind autoimmune diseases discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130301085633.htm
Karolinska Institutet. "Important control mechanism behind autoimmune diseases discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130301085633.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. 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