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Foul-smelling gas shows health benefits in reducing joint swelling
Date:4/29/2013

dy knows when they will get arthritis. Having a class of compounds which reduce inflammation and swelling when arthritis is already active is extremely exciting. These molecules may also be useful in other inflammatory conditions, and even in the inflammatory aspects of diabetes and obesity."

The study was part of a large collaboration funded by the Wellcome Trust and Arthritis Research UK, involving Professor Philip K Moore and Dr Julie Keeble from King's College London, as well as researchers at the National University of Singapore and Queen's University, Belfast. The team used primary human cells as well as a model of arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis causes some cells to proliferate too quickly in the joint and secrete substances which promote tissue inflammation, swelling and eventually joint destruction. However, the H2S donor molecule prevented this secretion, and inhibited the activity of several enzymes which cause inflation. In the arthritis model, the compound did not prevent arthritis, but was highly effective at reducing joint inflammation and swelling once arthritis was established, suggesting H2S-based compounds may one day be useful in clinic.

The same team has previously found that people who are overweight or have diabetes have lower levels of H2S in their bodies than healthy adults resulting in higher blood pressure, poorer insulin sensitivity and higher levels of sugar in their blood. It has also been reported to promote ulcer healing and reduce lung injury in smokers.

Co-author Dr Mark E Wood, at the University of Exeter, added: "Despite its reputation for being hazardous, H2S could in fact hold the key to solving some of the widespread health problems affecting the country. Our work is a major step in proving that it can be more hero than villain to the human body, providing it is administered in the right way, at the right time. We currently have several more efficient H2S donor molecules being evaluated with collabora
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Contact: Louise Vennells
l.vennells@exeter.ac.uk
44-013-927-24927
University of Exeter
Source:Eurekalert

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