Obese mice treated with the TSLP cytokine showed a significant loss in abdominal fat and weight. The fat loss was not associated with reduced food intake or faster metabolism, instead the cytokine stimulated the immune system to release lipids via the skin's oil-producing sebaceous glands.
The protein Arginase-2 works through mitochondria to reduce inflammation. The findings could lead to new treatments for diseases associated with neuroinflammation, including multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis.
By fusing a cytokine to a blood protein, researchers have developed a new therapy to help treat multiple sclerosis.
SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, enters human cells by attaching to ACE2 and utilizing TMPRSS2. Drugs that block ACE2 or inhibit the enzyme could help treat the coronavirus, but only during early infection. As the infection progresses, SARS-CoV-2 becomes engulfed in human cells, reducing the number of ACE2 receptors on a cell and leading to an increase of angiotensin II in the blood. Angiotensin II triggers an inflammatory pathway, providing a positive feedback cycle, named IL-6 amplifier, resulting in excessive immune activation and the cytokine storm associated with severe COVID-19.
Mounting evidence suggests coronavirus affects the brain, in addition to the lungs. Researchers are examining the threat COVID-19 posses to long term brain health. They speculate maternal inflammation could lead to an increased risk of autism-like behaviors and neurodevelopment deficits in children born to mothers diagnosed with coronavirus. Other studies are exploring how the virus may spread in the nervous system via synaptic transmission.
Inflammation caused by opioid use to both the brain and gut may exacerbate symptoms of negative emotions associated with withdrawal. Targeting the inflammation could help alleviate the negative experiences of opioid withdrawal and prevent dependence.
Researchers explore the link between the immune system and mental health disorders. Cytokines appear to play a critical role in the development and progression of mental illness. They question if administering prednisolone, a steroid that curbs inflammation, can have a beneficial effect on treating and preventing mental health problems.
Computational model sheds light on the impact chronic, low-grade inflammation has on the mesolimbic dopamine system and motivational impairments.