COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) is one of the most common fatal diseases worldwide. In Germany alone, there are about 3-5 million patients affected. COPD includes both chronic obstructive bronchitis and emphysema. Both represent irreversible changes of the central and lower respiratory tract which are accompanied by coughing, mucus production and difficulty in breathing.
The increased production of mucus is induced by the immigration of neutrophilic granulocytes and macrophages. This can be further accompanied by the destruction of the bronchial epithelium and the alveolar septae and thus lead to emphysema. The disease progresses in episodic bursts; although it cannot be cured, early diagnosis and appropriate therapy allow it to bring the symptoms under control.
Macrophages play a central role in the air passages and the lung periphery (the alveoli). Macrophages originate in the bone marrow. Before entering the blood stream, these cells differentiate through precursor myelomonocytes to monocytes which migrate into the tissues and are then called macrophages. One of the major tasks of macrophages is to take up foreign particles, like bacteria, viruses, and aerosol particles, by phagocytosis.
Michael van den Heuvel | alfa
Another piece of Ebola virus puzzle identified
17.01.2019 | Texas Biomedical Research Institute
New scale for electronegativity rewrites the chemistry textbook
17.01.2019 | Chalmers University of Technology
World first experiments on sensor that may revolutionise everything from medical devices to unmanned vehicles
The new sensor - capable of detecting vibrations of living cells - may revolutionise everything from medical devices to unmanned vehicles.
Dead and alive at the same time? Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics have implemented Erwin Schrödinger’s paradoxical gedanken experiment employing an entangled atom-light state.
In 1935 Erwin Schrödinger formulated a thought experiment designed to capture the paradoxical nature of quantum physics. The crucial element of this gedanken...
Cellulose obtained from wood has amazing material properties. Empa researchers are now equipping the biodegradable material with additional functionalities to produce implants for cartilage diseases using 3D printing.
It all starts with an ear. Empa researcher Michael Hausmann removes the object shaped like a human ear from the 3D printer and explains:
The phenomenon of so-called superlubricity is known, but so far the explanation at the atomic level has been missing: for example, how does extremely low friction occur in bearings? Researchers from the Fraunhofer Institutes IWM and IWS jointly deciphered a universal mechanism of superlubricity for certain diamond-like carbon layers in combination with organic lubricants. Based on this knowledge, it is now possible to formulate design rules for supra lubricating layer-lubricant combinations. The results are presented in an article in Nature Communications, volume 10.
One of the most important prerequisites for sustainable and environmentally friendly mobility is minimizing friction. Research and industry have been dedicated...
Just in time for Christmas, a Mars-analogue mission in Morocco, coordinated by the Robotics Innovation Center of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) as part of the SRC project FACILITATORS, has been successfully completed. SRC, the Strategic Research Cluster on Space Robotics Technologies, is a program of the European Union to support research and development in space technologies. From mid-November to mid-December 2018, a team of more than 30 scientists from 11 countries tested technologies for future exploration of Mars and Moon in the desert of the Maghreb state.
Close to the border with Algeria, the Erfoud region in Morocco – known to tourists for its impressive sand dunes – offered ideal conditions for the four-week...
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