Repurposing meclofenamate to treat abnormal respiratory mucus

Our respiratory systems are lined with a thin fluid layer called mucus on the inside. The mucus protects us from inhaling harmful and unwanted airborne agents from germs to pollutants; it achieves this feat due to its unique ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Study linking mucus plugs and COPD mortality could help save lives

A retrospective analysis of patient data from the COPDGene study suggests that targeting mucus plugs could help prevent deaths from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease—the fourth leading cause of death in the United States

Medical research

Acids help against airborne viruses, finds interdisciplinary study

A new study by various Swiss universities, including EPFL, shows that aerosols in indoor air can vary in acidity. This acidity determines how long viruses such as influenza and SARS-CoV-2 remain infectious in the air—with ...

Medical research

COVID-19: A respiratory mucosal vaccine effective in mice

Less known to the general public, mucosal vaccination via the mucus membranes could provide robust protection against SARS-CoV-2 infections. Immune cells in the nose and lungs are considered better prepared to encounter and ...

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In vertebrates, mucus (adjectival form: "mucous") is a slippery secretion produced by, and covering, mucous membranes. Mucous fluid is typically produced from mucous cells found in mucous glands. Mucous cells secrete products that are rich in glycoproteins and water. Mucous fluid may also originate from mixed glands, which contain both serous and mucous cells. It is a viscous colloid containing antiseptic enzymes (such as lysozyme), immunoglobulins, inorganic salts, proteins such as lactoferrin, and glycoproteins known as mucins that are produced by goblet cells in the mucous membranes and submucosal glands. This mucus serves to protect epithelial cells in the respiratory, gastrointestinal, urogenital, visual, and auditory systems in mammals; the epidermis in amphibians; and the gills in fish. A major function of this mucus is to protect against infectious agents such as fungi, bacteria and viruses. The average human body produces about a litre of mucus per day.

Bony fish, hagfish, snails, slugs, and some other invertebrates also produce external mucus. In addition to serving a protective function against infectious agents, such mucus provides protection against toxins produced by predators, can facilitate movement and may play a role in communication.

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