Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Depletion of alveolar macrophages linked to bacterial super-infections, study finds

Date:
July 22, 2013
Source:
Le Bonheur Children's Hospital
Summary:
A recent study helps explain why some humans contract bacterial super-infections like pneumonia with influenza.

A recent study published in the July issue of the Journal of Immunology helps explain why some humans contract bacterial super-infections like pneumonia with influenza. The research was led by Le Bonheur Pediatrician-in-Chief Jon McCullers, MD -- an infectious disease specialist who is also chair of the Department of Pediatrics for the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and adjunct faculty at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

"It's been known that the influenza virus does something to suppress host immune function, which can facilitate development of deadly secondary bacterial pneumonias," said McCullers. "But we haven't known what that was or why it happens."

McCullers' research -- conducted at his National Institutes of Health-funded laboratory at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital by UTHSC graduate student Hazem Ghoneim, a PhD candidate -- used advanced techniques to differentiate types of alveolar macrophages found in the lungs and airways. Researchers found that of the three types identified, only one is truly capable of fending off secondary bacterial infection. This population of macrophages, labeled the resident alveolar macrophages, is depleted during a flu infection.

"We found that influenza is specifically killing these true alveolar macrophages," said McCullers. "The window of time someone is susceptible to secondary infections corresponds with the time it takes for the other two types of alveolar macrophages to differentiate so they are then able to fight off the infection."

McCullers says his study is a step toward developing strategies for treatment.

"This discovery provides a roadmap for developing immunotherapies that can supplement the natural defenses of our body when they are at their weakest. Influenza and pneumonia are the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S., and we desperately need research such as this to improve our armamentarium," said McCullers.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. H. E. Ghoneim, P. G. Thomas, J. A. McCullers. Depletion of Alveolar Macrophages during Influenza Infection Facilitates Bacterial Superinfections. The Journal of Immunology, 2013; 191 (3): 1250 DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1300014

Cite This Page:

Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. "Depletion of alveolar macrophages linked to bacterial super-infections, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 July 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130722152743.htm>.
Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. (2013, July 22). Depletion of alveolar macrophages linked to bacterial super-infections, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130722152743.htm
Le Bonheur Children's Hospital. "Depletion of alveolar macrophages linked to bacterial super-infections, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130722152743.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. 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:
from the past week

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