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Researchers implicate well-known protein in fibrosis
Date:11/20/2012

therlands contributed to the study, which relied on tissue samples from human scleroderma patients and mouse models.

Agents that block TLR4 are already being developed for inflammation and sepsis in humans. Effective TLR4 inhibitor drugs may blunt and even possibly reverse the fibrosis in scleroderma, says Bhattacharyya. However, earlier attempts to develop therapeutics that block TLR4 have met with failure due to toxicity.

"These results, while significant, are preliminary. We now know that TLR4 plays a role in scleroderma, but much research remains to be done to develop safe and effective drugs to inhibit this pathway," she says.

The investigators are currently studying additional mouse models to better understand the role of TLR4 in fibrosis and are developing novel small molecules to selectively block TLR4 as a potential therapy.


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Contact: Marla Paul
marla-paul@northwestern.edu
312-503-8928
Northwestern University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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