Navigation Links
Scientists discover a new player in innate immune response

All multicellular animals have an innate immune system: When bacteria, parasites or fungi invade the organism, small protein molecules are released that eliminate the attackers. Scientists of the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) have now discovered a new molecule that plays an important role in triggering the innate immune response of the fruit fly Drosophila, mice and even humans. Their work has just been published in the journal Nature Immunology.

The cells of the innate immune system recognize hostile invaders with the aid of receptors on their surface: The moment these receptors recognize a foreign structure, they send a message, via a complicated signaling pathway, into the cells interior. The cell then releases immunologically active proteins. The components of this signaling pathway have been conserved surprisingly well through evolution; the various signaling molecules are very similar from fly to man, both in structure and in function.

A group of scientists headed by Dr. Michael Boutros of the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ), collaborating with colleagues of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in Strasbourg, made use of this fact: Using the Nobel-prize winning method of RNA interference (RNAi), they switched off individual molecules of the signaling pathway in Drosophila and have thus come across a new member: Akirin, meaning "making things clear" in Japanese. When they suppressed Akirin production in the immune cells of the flies, these were significantly more susceptible to bacterial infections. And when they knocked down the protein in all body cells, the fly larvae died in an early stage. Colleagues at Japan's Osaka University investigated the corresponding mouse Akirin: In mice, too, the protein fulfills the same function as in the fruit fly and in man.

"What is called the NF-B signaling pathway plays an important role in inflammations, and inflammations are highly relevant in cancer development," said Michael Boutros. "Therefore, the search is on for small molecules that can inhibit this signaling pathway." First inhibitors acting against other links in the signaling chain are already being tested in clinical trials. "The more links of this chain we know, the more possibilities we have to interfere with it," said Boutros explaining the aim of his work.


Contact: Stefanie Seltmann
Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres

Related biology news :

1. Scientists study the link between childrens nutrition and adult diseases
2. Scientists associate 6 new genetic variants with heart disease risk factor
3. CSHL scientists identify cells that promote formation of lethal lung metastases
4. Smithsonian scientists highlight environmental impacts of biofuels
5. Scientists find missing evolutionary link using tiny fungus crystal
6. Jefferson scientists studying the effects of high-dose vitamin C on non-Hodgkin lymphoma patients
7. Five young Hebrew University scientists win first competitive EU grants
8. Scientists find good news about methane bubbling up from the ocean floor
9. International scientists tackle obstacles to treating brain disorders
10. UC Irvine scientists find new way to sort stem cells
11. Top scientists meet for global conference on stem cell therapy for cardiovascular diseases
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015 ... biometrics that helps to identify and verify the ... is considered as the secure and accurate method ... of a particular individual because each individual,s signature ... results especially when dynamic signature of an individual ...
(Date:11/2/2015)... PARK, Calif. , Nov. 2, 2015  SRI ... $9 million to provide preclinical development services to the ... the contract, SRI will provide scientific expertise, modern testing ... wide variety of preclinical pharmacology and toxicology studies to ... --> The PREVENT Cancer Drug Development ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... 29, 2015  Rubicon Genomics, Inc., today announced ... of its DNA library preparation products, including the ... ThruPLEX Plasma-seq kit. ThruPLEX Plasma-seq has been optimized ... NGS libraries for liquid biopsies--the analysis of cell-free ... applications in cancer and other conditions. Eurofins Scientific ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... 2015  Asia-Pacific (APAC) holds the third-largest share ... The trend of outsourcing to low-cost locations is ... volume share for the region in the short ... in the CRO industry will improve. ... ), finds that the market earned revenues ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... VANCOUVER , Nov. 24, 2015 /CNW/ - iCo ... ICOTF), today reported financial results for the quarter ... are expressed in Canadian dollars and presented under ... the United States ," said Andrew ... "These advancements regarding iCo-008 are not only value ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Global, Inc., a worldwide provider of clinical research services headquartered in ... company has set a new quarterly earnings record in Q3 of ... for Q3 of 2014 to Q3 of 2015.   ... with the establishment of an Asia-Pacific office ... Kingdom and Mexico , with the ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , November 24, 2015 SHPG ) ... participate in the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual Healthcare Conference ... December 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 p.m. GMT). ... Chief Financial Officer, will participate in the Piper Jaffray 27 th ... , NY on Tuesday, December 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST ...
Breaking Biology Technology: