Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Metabolic imbalance increases the risk of respiratory diseases in childhood

26.03.2015

An imbalance in our metabolism can trigger inflammatory processes in the body and activate the immune system. In a recent study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, UFZ researchers have been able to show that this applies even to newborns and children under one year of age, and is correlated with the development of respiratory diseases in early childhood.

If pathogenic agents penetrate our body, our immune system is put on high alert. The body reacts with inflammatory processes, initiating a whole series of defence mechanisms - with the aim of quickly and effectively incapacitating the undesirable intruders.


The metabolism influences the manifestation of respiratory diseases. This was shown in the mother-child study (LiNA), following the medical and environmental development of more than 620 children.

André Künzelmann, UFZ

However, on occasion, an alteration in metabolic balance can be the trigger for an inflammatory immune response. In such cases, forces are mobilised to combat an enemy that does not actually exist.

"We wanted to find out whether this phenomenon is present among newborns and children under one year of age," says UFZ Researcher Dr. Gunda Herberth. Her study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology is part of the so-called "LiNA Study", which examines sensitive phases of a child's development with a focus on lifestyle, environmental factors and the subsequent appearance of allergies and respiratory diseases.

Dr. Herberth and her colleagues examined blood samples from newborns (cord blood) and children under one year of age for any possible correlation between metabolites and immune parameters – and made a discovery: Elevated concentrations of specific sugars - known as hexoses - in the blood were accompanied by elevated concentrations of inflammatory immune parameters.

Conversely, a high concentration of other metabolites, such as protein components (amino acids) or degradation products of certain fats inhibited the development of inflammatory parameters.

"Increased concentrations of sugars in the blood therefore do actually lead to the development of an inflammatory immune response, even in newborns. In turn, this is directly correlated with the development of respiratory diseases in early childhood," explains Dr. Herberth.

In-vitro tests carried out by the researchers have confirmed the findings of her epidemiological investigation: In cell cultures, immune cells exposed to hexoses showed elevated concentrations of inflammatory parameters, while those exposed to amino acids inhibited the production of inflammatory components. Dr. Herberth commented: "As certain amino acids can obviously also provide protection from inflammation, we assume that the balance between the metabolites is primarily responsible for the development of inflammatory processes."

So in subsequent investigations, the UFZ researchers are aiming to determine the reason for this kind of change in the concentration of metabolites in the blood: "In addition to diet, environmental pollutants also undoubtedly play a decisive role," stated Dr. Herberth. "For example, we know that plasticisers can impair our metabolism. Precisely how and where they disrupt our metabolic pathways – and depending on the degree, with far-reaching consequences – will be the focus of our future research."

Publication:
Endogenous metabolites and inflammasome activity in early childhood and links to respiratory diseases
Gunda Herberth, Kirsten Offenberg, Ulrike Rolle-Kampczyk, Mario Bauer, Wolfgang Otto, Stefan Röder, Konrad Grützmann, Ulrich Sack, Jan-Christoph Simon, Michael Borte, Martin von Bergen, Irina Lehmann, for the LINA Study Group
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jaci.2015.01.022

The investigations of the LiNA Study were supported the Helmholtz Association.

Further information:
Dr. Gunda Herberth, Dr. Irina Lehmann
Department Environmental Immunology
Telefon: +49-(0)341-235-1547, gunda.herberth@ufz.de
or via
UFZ press office (Tilo Arnhold, Susanne Hufe)
Phone: +49-(0)341-235-1635, -1630
http://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=640

In the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), scientists conduct research into the causes and consequences of far-reaching environmental changes. Their areas of study cover water resources, biodiversity, the consequences of climate change and possible adaptation strategies, environmental technologies and biotech-nologies, bio-energy, the effects of chemicals in the environment and the way they influence health, modelling and social-scientific issues. Its guiding principle: Our re-search contributes to the sustainable use of natural resources and helps to provide long-term protection for these vital assets in the face of global change. The UFZ em-ploys more than 1,100 staff at its sites in Leipzig, Halle and Magdeburg. It is funded by the federal government, Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. http://www.ufz.de/

The Helmholtz Association contributes to solving major and urgent issues in society, science and industry through scientific excellence in six research areas: Energy, earth and environment, health, key technologies, structure of matter as well as avia-tion, aerospace and transportation. The Helmholtz Association is the largest scientific organisation in Germany, with 35,000 employees in 18 research centres and an an-nual budget of around €3.8 billion. Its work is carried out in the tradition of the great natural scientist Hermann von Helmholtz (1821-1894). http://www.helmholtz.de/

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=33684

Susanne Hufe | Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung - UFZ

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Second cause of hidden hearing loss identified
20.02.2017 | Michigan Medicine - University of Michigan

nachricht Prospect for more effective treatment of nerve pain
20.02.2017 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA's fermi finds possible dark matter ties in andromeda galaxy

22.02.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Wintering ducks connect isolated wetlands by dispersing plant seeds

22.02.2017 | Life Sciences

Impacts of mass coral die-off on Indian Ocean reefs revealed

21.02.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>