Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers show chronic sinusitis is immune disorder; antifungal medicine effective treatment

24.03.2004


Findings could lead to effective new treatments for the disease



Researchers at the University at Buffalo and the Mayo Clinic have shown that chronic sinusitis is an immune disorder caused by fungus, opening up a promising new avenue for treating this ubiquitous and debilitating condition, for which there is no FDA-approved therapy.

Results of their research suggest that common airborne fungi lodge in the mucus lining of the sinuses in most people, but initiate an immune response only in individuals prone to chronic sinusitis. The immune response causes the fungi to be attacked, which leads to damage of the sinus membranes, resulting in full-blown symptoms.


"We hope this study will lead to the first treatment aimed at the root cause of chronic sinusitis, rather than a treatment just to mask the symptoms," said David A. Sherris, M.D., interim chair of the UB Department of Otolaryngology.

Sherris presented the study findings today (March 23, 2004) at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology in San Francisco. The research was conducted while Sherris was at the Mayo Clinic.

Through a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind pilot trial using the fungicide Amphotericin-B applied intranasally, the researchers found that the treatment group showed a significant decrease in the inflammatory thickening of the sinus membranes compared to the control group.

Inflammation in the mucus also decreased significantly in those receiving the drug, compared to placebo, and 70 percent of patients on the medication had a decrease in the amount of nasal swelling, results showed.

"We showed in 1999 that fungal organisms were present in the mucus of 96 percent of patients who had surgery for chronic sinusitis, and that inflammatory cells were clumped around the fungi, which indicated to us that the condition was an immune disorder caused by fungus, " said Sherris. "But many doctors didn’t believe us."

"Next, we conducted various immunologic studies and an open trial using the fungicide treatment and found that 75 percent of patients improved on the new therapy. Now we have similar results from a randomized, blinded trial with a control group, which is the ’gold standard’ in drug testing. Our next step is to conduct a multi-center trial using antifungals, which we hope will lead to FDA approval of antifungal treatment for this chronic disease."

Chronic sinusitis, a disease of the nasal passages and the surrounding sinus cavities, is thought to affect 16.8 percent of the adult population of the U.S. It causes long-term nasal congestion, production of thick mucus, loss of sense of smell and creates an environment for opportunistic bacterial infections that exacerbate those symptoms. Sherris said studies have shown that chronic sinusitis exceeds even congestive heart failure in its adverse effects on quality of life.

Little is known about the causes of this disease. Without a specific target for intervention, physicians often simply treated the secondary bacterial infections in hopes of providing a modicum of relief.

The current trial involved 24 patients with chronic sinusitis who were randomly assigned to receive the treatment or a placebo. Neither the patients nor the investigators knew who received the drug or the inactive agent. The final analysis involved data from 10 treatment patients and 14 controls, all of whom were in the trial for six months.

Researchers took CT scans (special x-rays of the sinuses) at baseline and at 6 months. They also graded patients’ inflammation by direct exam with an endoscope in the nose at the start of the study, and at 3 and 6 months.

The CT scans showed that the treatment group had a mean 8.8 percent decrease in inflammatory mucus thickening, while the placebo group had an increase of 2.5 percent. Sherris said 70 percent of patients in the treatment group also showed significant improvement when their nasal passages were viewed through an endoscope, while the placebo group showed no change. Markers of inflammation in the mucus also decreased significantly in the treatment group, compared to the placebo group.


Additional researchers on the study, all from the Mayo Clinic, were Jens U. Ponikau, M.D., Amy Weaver, Evangelo Frigas, M.D., and Hirohito Kita, M.D.


The research was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the Mayo Foundation for Education and Research.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, the largest and most comprehensive campus in the State University of New York.

Lois Baker | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.buffalo.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

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: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>