The anti-inflammatory protein annexin 1 may protect patients from the detrimental effects of severe inflammatory response syndrome, as reported by researchers at Barts and the London, Queen Marys School of Medicine and Dentistry. The paper by Damazo et al., "Critical protective role for annexin 1 gene expression in the endotoxemic murine microcirculation," appears in the June issue of The American Journal of Pathology and is accompanied by a commentary.
Severe inflammatory response syndrome, or SIRS, occurs when the bodys response to an overwhelming infection becomes uncontrolled. The very immune response meant to clear the pathogen and its toxins actually causes damage to the hosts own tissues when it goes into overdrive, releasing too many immune signals. Thus, the immune response must be carefully controlled to prevent damage to the host.
Damazo et al. studied this balancing act by analyzing the effects of the bacterial toxin LPS on normal and annexin 1 knockout mice. Annexin 1 was chosen because it appears to be involved in the resolution phase of the immune response: its expression on white blood cells impairs their ability to bind blood vessel walls, preventing their transit from the blood to other organs.
Siân Wherrett | EurekAlert!
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