Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

IRCM scientist demonstrates basic active mechanism of immune-system cells

17.11.2004


Major breakthrough in the treatment of autoimmune diseases



In the upcoming issue of Immunity, a highly regarded journal put out by the Cell group, Dr. André Veillette, a scientist at the Institut de recherches cliniques de Montréal (IRCM), and his team will publish the results of a study that could revolutionize the treatment of autoimmune diseases, such as juvenile diabetes, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. Contemporary medicine has to date achieved only mixed results in dealing with these diseases, which affect hundreds of thousands of Canadians.

Dr. Veillette’s team has discovered one of the basic mechanisms that control the production of antibodies by immune-system cells known as B lymphocytes or B cells. In subjects with autoimmune diseases, these lymphocytes, which are also normally responsible for fighting infection, are hyperactive, causing antibodies secreted by superactivated lymphocytes to turn against the body. This leads to the development of autoimmune diseases, which are characterized by debilitating inflammation and advanced tissue damage. Dr. Veillette’s breakthrough identifies a cascade of molecular reactions involved in this type of damage, providing new therapeutic targets that could be used to reduce attacks on the pancreas in juvenile diabetes, on the kidneys in lupus, and on the joints in rheumatoid arthritis.


This publication is a major milestone for Dr. Veillette, an internationally recognized expert on the identification of molecular mechanisms that control the immune response. Initial findings were published in Nature Immunology in 2001, followed by an article in Nature Cell Biology in 2003. The article slated for publication in the November 2004 issue of Immunity provides genetic evidence of the importance of the molecular mechanism discovered by Dr. Veillette’s team.

More precisely, this discovery links three elements: a receptor (or "sensor") located on the surface of the lymphocytes, known as SLAM; an adaptive protein (or "molecular relay") located in the cell, known as SAP; and FynT, an enzyme that is also located within the cell. Using mice with genetically mutated SLAM, SAP or FynT proteins, Dr. Veillette provided evidence of the importance of links among the three proteins. It should also be noted that SAP protein mutations occur in humans, causing a fatal immune dysfunction known as "X-linked lymphoproliferation" (XLP). Dr. Veillette’s discovery paves the way for the development of SLAM, SAP or FynT inhibitors, which could block excessive immune responses observed in patients with autoimmune diseases.

François Brochu | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ircm.qc.ca

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Neutrons observe vitamin B6-dependent enzyme activity useful for drug development
17.10.2017 | DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory

nachricht Plant escape from waterlogging
17.10.2017 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

Im Focus: New nanomaterial can extract hydrogen fuel from seawater

Hybrid material converts more sunlight and can weather seawater's harsh conditions

It's possible to produce hydrogen to power fuel cells by extracting the gas from seawater, but the electricity required to do it makes the process costly. UCF...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Plant escape from waterlogging

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Study suggests oysters offer hot spot for reducing nutrient pollution

17.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

17.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>