Navigation Links
Cellular force that drives allergy and asthma can be blocked by interferon

DALLAS June 16, 2014 A mechanism that could underlie the development of cells that drive asthma and allergies has been uncovered by immunology researchers at UTSouthwestern Medical Center.

Asthma and allergies are both driven by an inappropriate activation of the immune system, primarily a subtype of white blood cells known as T helper 2 cells, or Th2 cells. These cells are normally responsible for defense against parasites, but are also the main culprits behind the symptoms of asthma and allergies.

Dr. David Farrar, Associate Professor of Immunology and Molecular Biology at UTSouthwestern, and his team found that the antiviral molecules known as type I interferons (IFNs) block the development of these allergy- and asthma-driving Th2 cells.

"The fact that interferon could stop the activation of these harmful cells was of particular interest because interferons are already approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of other diseases, such as multiple sclerosis and hepatitis," said Dr. Farrar, who holds the J. Wayne Streilein, M.D. Professorship in Immunology.

The work, published in the Journal of Immunology, could eventually give rise to new therapies.

To demonstrate the prevalence of asthma, in the United States about 13 percent of adults nearly 30 million people have received a diagnosis of asthma. This frequency compares to 11 percent who have been diagnosed with heart disease and 8 percent who have had any form of cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Asthma is reported more often among women than men, among Caucasians, and in families with limited economic resources. Allergies, too, are prevalent, with more than 17.5 million people suffering from hay fever in the U.S.

The development of Th2 cells is stimulated by a particular immune molecule that triggers the production of a protein called GATA3. Frequently referred to as the master regulator of Th2 cell development, GATA3 turns on the genes that distinguish Th2 cells from other cell types, including other T cells.

Dr. Farrar's group found that type I IFNs block this process by targeting a part of the GATA3 gene known as exon 1a and turning it off, thereby inhibiting the production of the GATA3 protein and, consequently, the development of Th2 cells.

"Targeting this pathway may lead to permanent tolerance of these cells to allergens," said Dr. Farrar. "We are currently pursuing studies that may lead to clinical trials that will determine whether interferon can be used to treat allergic asthma patients."

Dr. Farrar's lab studies how a collective group of proteins called cytokines regulate immune responses. Type 1 interferon, the first immune cytokine discovered, is one of the very first lines of defense against viruses. The protein was initially identified based on its ability to inhibit influenza virus. Since then, scientists have discovered that almost any cell in the body can secrete interferon if it becomes infected with certain viruses, and that most cells can respond to interferon.

Contact: Russell Rian
UT Southwestern Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Cellular pathway linked to diabetes, heart disease
2. Why omega-3 oils help at the cellular level
3. Discovery explains how cellular pathways converge to regulate food intake and body weight
4. New technique reveals cross-talk between 2 essential cellular processes
5. LA BioMed investigator, Dr. Yutaka Niihara, developing novel cellular therapy
6. Molecular switch identified that controls key cellular process
7. MedScope Announces Changes to the Medical Alarm Industry, Bringing it into the Cellular Age
8. The new age of proteomics: An integrative vision of the cellular world
9. Research explores road signs on the intracellular highway
10. Extracellular vesicles may open new opportunities for brain cancer diagnosis and treatment
11. Study: HIV Infection Does Not Adversely Affect Outcomes of Liver Transplantation for Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Cellular force that drives allergy and asthma can be blocked by interferon
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Conventional wisdom preaches the ... In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high can result in disappointment, ... just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from reveals ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. ... the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has ... , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg ... Legal Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this recognition are considered among ... Greenberg Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin ... companies that call for a minimum wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and ... This will restore the lost value of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Haute Living, is proud to recognize Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as a prominent ... “the most beautiful women in the world, and the most handsome men, look ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Mass. , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, ... pharmaceutical company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," ... will increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... HOUSTON , June 23, 2016  MedSource ... platform as its e-clinical software solution of choice.  ... the best possible value to their clients by ... nowEDC.  The preferred relationship establishes nowEDC as the ... pricing for MedSource,s full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... Chemical (Sugar, Petrochemical, Glycerin), Inorganic Chemical), Functionality (Filler, Binder, ... Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... excipients market is projected to reach USD 8.1 Billion ... forecast period 2016 to 2021. The ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: