Inflammation

Atherosclerosis—a short cut to inflammation

The enzyme Dicer processes RNA transcripts, cutting them into short segments that regulate the synthesis of specific proteins. An Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich team has shown that Dicer promotes the development ...

Feb 10, 2016
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Cardiac repair: Neutrophils to the rescue

Following an acute heart attack, immune cells called neutrophils coordinate an inflammatory response which can exacerbate the damage to the organ. Now researchers from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have ...

Feb 10, 2016
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Predicting who will develop multiple sclerosis

A team of investigators at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) has launched a study of individuals at risk for multiple sclerosis (MS). By focusing on ...

Feb 08, 2016
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The risks and benefits of tanning

Eighty years ago, when sun exposure was first associated with skin cancer, popular culture was exalting tanning by emphasizing that a "fine brown color suggests health and good times, and is a pleasant thing to see."

17 hours ago
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Researchers discover underlying cause of myeloma

Yale Cancer Center researchers have identified what causes a third of all myelomas, a type of cancer affecting plasma cells. The findings, published Feb. 10 in the New England Journal of Medicine, could fundamentally change ...

17 hours ago
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Inflammation (Latin, īnflammō, "I ignite, set alight") is part of the complex biological response of vascular tissues to harmful stimuli, such as pathogens, damaged cells, or irritants. Inflammation is a protective attempt by the organism to remove the injurious stimuli and to initiate the healing process. Inflammation is not a synonym for infection, even in cases where inflammation is caused by infection. Although infection is caused by a microorganism, inflammation is one of the responses of the organism to the pathogen. However, inflammation is a stereotyped response, and therefore it is considered as a mechanism of innate immunity, as compared to adaptive immunity, which is specific for each pathogen.

Without inflammation, wounds and infections would never heal. Similarly, progressive destruction of the tissue would compromise the survival of the organism. However, chronic inflammation can also lead to a host of diseases, such as hay fever, periodontitis, atherosclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and even cancer (e.g., gallbladder carcinoma). It is for that reason that inflammation is normally closely regulated by the body.

Inflammation can be classified as either acute or chronic. Acute inflammation is the initial response of the body to harmful stimuli and is achieved by the increased movement of plasma and leukocytes (especially granulocytes ) from the blood into the injured tissues. A cascade of biochemical events propagates and matures the inflammatory response, involving the local vascular system, the immune system, and various cells within the injured tissue. Prolonged inflammation, known as chronic inflammation, leads to a progressive shift in the type of cells present at the site of inflammation and is characterized by simultaneous destruction and healing of the tissue from the inflammatory process.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

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