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Potential New Approaches to Treating Eye Diseases

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Potential new approaches to treating eye diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are described in a new study published in the February Journal of Experimental Medicine. Hongkang Xi, Menno van Lookeren Campagne, and colleagues discovered that a signaling protein, or cytokine, called IL-33, plays a key role in recruiting phagocytes to damaged retina and induces retinal degeneration. Blocking the IL-33 receptor inhibits this process and prevents injury-induced retinal degeneration.

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Which Comes First: Self-Reported Penicillin Allergy or Chronic Hives?

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People who have self-reported penicillin allergy may have a three times greater chance of suffering from chronic hives. And people who have chronic hives tend to self-report penicillin allergy at a three times greater rate than the general population. Authors of a new study think it's not coincidence.

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Dr. Stuart McKinnon Awarded 2016 Shaffer Prize for Research

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For his research project to determine whether therapies can be designed to modulate the immune system to prevent vision loss and blindness in glaucoma patients, Stuart J. McKinnon, MD, PhD was awarded the 2016 Shaffer Prize for Innovative Glaucoma Research.

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Vaginal Microbes Can Be Partially Restored to C-Section Babies

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In a small pilot study, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai determined that a simple swab to transfer vaginal microbes from a mother to her C-section-delivered newborn can alter the baby's microbial makeup (microbiome) in a way that more closely resembles the microbiome of a vaginally delivered baby.

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Study Shows Zinc Supplement Boosted Serum Zinc Levels and Immunity in Older Adults

A new study finds that providing zinc supplements to older adults in nursing homes increased their serum zinc levels and improved their immune response, providing potential protection against infection. The research group’s previous work found that nursing home residents had low zinc levels.

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New Model: How Asthma Develops From Exposure to House Dust Mites

University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers have found a previously unknown step in the pathway that leads to asthma, a discovery that may offer new therapeutic approaches to this incurable disease. Asthma affects more than 25 million people in the United States, including about 7 million children.

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Immunotherapy Research Leads To "Triple Play" for One Scientist

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Researchers have begun to explore in earnest the concept of "mixed vascular dementia," but until recently there was no reliable animal model. When Donna Wilcock of the UK Sanders-Brown Center on Aging discovered that a special diet deficient in B vitamins induced cognitive impairment in mice, she gave science the animal model it needed, plus the potential for a modifiable biomarker for vascular cognitive impairment.

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Potential Therapeutic Targets Identified for Multiple Sclerosis

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Treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS) and other inflammatory diseases may benefit by new findings from a study that identified potential therapeutic targets for a devastating disease striking some 2.3 million people worldwide.

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Antibodies May Provide ‘Silver Bullet’ for Ebola Viruses

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Researchers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston (UTMB) reported today in the journal Cell that they have isolated human monoclonal antibodies from Ebola survivors which can neutralize multiple species of the virus.

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The Immune System Maintains a Memory of Past Infections by Priming Genes for Future Encounters

Our ability to fight off recurrent infections, such as a colds or flu, may lie in the ‘immunological memory’ found in a newly discovered class of gene regulatory elements, according to research from the University of Birmingham, supported by the BBSRC and Bloodwise.

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Researchers Reveal Structure of Protein Complex That Plays Key Role in Modulating Immune System

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Search for new inflammatory disease drugs may be aided by detailed structure of distinct ubiquitin ligase complex

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New TSRI Study Shows Path to ‘Dial Down’ Autoimmunity Without Compromising Immune Response

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A new study led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute shows how dangerous autoimmune responses, seen in diseases such as lupus and multiple sclerosis, might be “dialed down” without compromising the immune system’s ability to fight viruses and bacteria.

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Important Regulator of Immune System Decoded

Plasma cells play a key role in our immune system. Now scientists at the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) in Vienna, Austria, and at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI) in Melbourne, Australia, succeeded in characterizing a central regulator of plasma cell function. The results of both teams are published in two back-to-back papers in “Nature Immunology” today.

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How Bacterial Communication 'Goes with the Flow' in Causing Infection, Blockage

The destructive ability of bacteria to organize an infection or block pathways such as intestines, medical stents and wastewater pipes relies on communication with one another.

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Life-Extending Hormone Bolsters the Body's Immune Function

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A hormone that extends lifespan in mice by 40% is produced by specialized cells in the thymus gland, according to a new study by Yale School of Medicine researchers. The team also found that increasing the levels of this hormone, called FGF21, protects against the loss of immune function that comes with age.

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Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute Scientists Find New Evidence of Immune System Plasticity

Researchers found that the inherent flexibility of the immune system is even more complex than previously understood. Study reveals more about how memory cells arise after infections.

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Genetic Variation Linked to Respiratory Disease

A UA researcher and clinician team has discovered that genetic mutations in a protein associated with asthma can affect a person’s susceptibility to a variety of lung diseases — and could lead to new treatments.

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Tom and Holly Gores Partner with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles to Create New State-of-the-Art Allergy Center

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Financier and philanthropist Tom Gores and his wife Holly have made a $5 million commitment to establish a new pediatric allergy treatment center at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.

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Early-Life Exercise Alters Gut Microbes, Promotes Healthy Brain and Metabolism

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The human gut harbors a teeming menagerie of over 100 trillion microorganisms, and researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have discovered that exercising early in life can alter that microbial community for the better, promoting healthier brain and metabolic activity over the course of a lifetime.

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Immunotherapy Breakthrough Led by UCLA Researcher Now Approved as Standard of Care for Advanced Melanoma

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A first-of-its-kind (anti-PD-1) immunotherapy was approved today by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration as first-line treatment for metastatic melanoma—allowing greater access to this therapy for patients without having to previously receive other prior treatments.