Navigation Links
Scientists film inner workings of the immune system
Date:12/3/2008

Forget what's number one at the box office this week. The most exciting new film features the intricate workings of the body, filmed by scientists using ground-breaking technology.

For the first time in Australia, scientists at Sydney's Centenary Institute have filmed an immune cell becoming infected by a parasite and followed the infection as it begins to spread throughout the body.

Professor Wolfgang Weninger, head of the Immune Imaging program at the Centenary Institute, says the discovery (published in PLoS Pathogens) was made possible using high powered multi-photon microscopy which allows real cells to be viewed in real time.

"Using multi-photon microscopy, we studied dendritic cells in the skin. Under normal conditions we found the cells in the epidermis (top layer) were static, whereas in the dermis (second layer) they were very active, moving around as though seeking out pathogens," explains Professor Weninger. "Once we established this, it was fascinating to introduce the Leishmania infection and watch as the parasite was picked up by the cells and the process by which it began to spread throughout the body."

Leishmaniasis affects up to 12 million people in parts of Africa, the Middle East and South America. The disease causes skin sores and can affect internal organs such as the spleen, liver and bone marrow. If left untreated, it can be fatal.

The ability to visually follow a pathogen on its journey through the immune cells provides critical insight for future vaccine design and has potential to improve current vaccinations.

"We now have a general idea of how pathogens are recognised by the immune system and which cells are involved," Professor Weninger says. "This means we can look at identifying the molecules responsible for the uptake of Leishmania infection and these molecules could become vaccine targets. Additionally, we can investigate the immune responses of other infections which could lead to better vaccines."

"On the other side of the story, scientists can now visualise the pathway of current vaccines in the immune system, providing greater understanding and the potential for refining current interventions against disease."

Centenary Institute Executive Director, Professor Mathew Vadas, says the multi-photon microscope used to film this immune process is the Hubble telescope of medical research.

"The Hubble allowed the universe to be seen with absolute clarity, which wasn't before possible from earth," he explains. "This is exactly the same as multi-photon microscopy it provides a unique and innovative view of cells, unveiling a whole new understanding of how immune processes work."


'/>"/>

Contact: Erin Sharp
e.sharp@centenary.org.au
61-295-656-118
Research Australia
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Rooted plants move mysteriously down greenways, scientists say
2. Caltech scientists show function of helical band in heart
3. Argonne scientists discover possible mechanism for creating handedness in biological molecules
4. Scientists developing food allergy treatment
5. Wistar scientists find key to keeping killer T cells in prime shape for fighting infection, cancer
6. CSHL scientists discover a new way in which epigenetic information is inherited
7. Caltech scientists develop barcode chip for cheap, fast blood tests
8. UNC scientists teach enzyme to make synthetic heparin in more varieties
9. Childrens Hospital scientists achieve repair of injured heart muscle in lab tests of stem cells
10. Scientists shed light on evolution of gene regulation
11. Scientists build roach motel for nasty bugs of the bacterial variety
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/13/2017)... 2017 According to a new market research report ... Identity Administration, and Authorization), Service, Authentication Type, Deployment Mode, Vertical, and Region ... expected to grow from USD 14.30 Billion in 2017 to USD 31.75 ... ... MarketsandMarkets Logo ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... No two people are believed to ... York University Tandon School of Engineering and Michigan ... partial similarities between prints are common enough that ... and other electronic devices can be more vulnerable ... in the fact that fingerprint-based authentication systems feature ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... Allen Institute for Cell Science today announces the launch ... dynamic digital window into the human cell. The website ... deep learning to create predictive models of cell organization, ... suite of powerful tools. The Allen Cell Explorer will ... resources created and shared by the Allen Institute for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... Linda, Ca (PRWEB) , ... August 15, 2017 ... ... coffee production and is threatened by various biotic and abiotic factors. During this ... complex evolutionary history of coffee, as well as gain a better understanding of ...
(Date:8/14/2017)... ... ... The Conference Forum has confirmed the one-day agenda for the ... 2017 at the Marriott Copley Place in Boston, MA. , Returning as program chair ... Pfizer Innovative Research Lab, Pfizer, who leads 19 industry speakers in discussing how and ...
(Date:8/11/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... August 11, 2017 , ... ... food production, and, in particular, more natural alternatives to synthetic ingredients,” said Matt ... of Third Wave, with the established manufacturing presence and know-how of Biorigin will ...
(Date:8/10/2017)... ... August 09, 2017 , ... Each year in the United States more than ... live an independent lifestyle and, even worse, the one-year mortality rate is high, ranging ... the University of California Davis Medical Center (Sacramento) and Second Xiangya Hospital of the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: