Immunology

08/28/2014 - 10:30

Children who repeatedly become infected with malaria often experience no clinical symptoms with these subsequent infections, and a team led by UC San Francisco researchers has discovered that this might be due at least in part to a depletion of specific types of immune cells.

 

08/19/2014 - 14:13

Malaria is a life-threatening disease caused by a parasite that invades one red blood cell after another. Little is known about this infection process because it happens so quickly, potentially explaining why there is currently no approved malaria vaccine. In a study published by Cell Press August 19th in the Biophysical Journal, researchers used a tool called laser optical tweezers to study interactions between the disease-causing parasite and red blood cells.

 

07/28/2014 - 10:36

A rare procedure occasionally performed during Jewish circumcisions that involves direct oral suction is a likely source of  herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) transmissions documented in infants between 1988 and 2012, a literature review conducted by Penn Medicine researchers and published online in the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society found.  The reviewers, from Penn’s Center for Evidence-based Practice, identified 30 reported cases in New York, Canada and Israel.

 

07/09/2014 - 05:51

Using a novel screening platform to rapidly evaluate the cellular effects of 1,000 chemical compounds, a team led by UC San Francisco scientists has identified eight drugs that may stimulate nervous system repair in multiple sclerosis (MS).

 

06/29/2014 - 19:52

Recent years have witnessed an explosion in the levels of tuberculosis, making it the second biggest cause of death by infectious disease after HIV. A major reason behind this is the emergence of strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis that are resistant to rifamycin family antibiotics such as rifampicin, the most effective tuberculosis antibiotic available. However, a breakthrough may be on the way in the fight against tuberculosis. A new study in the Journal of Biological Chemistry describes a modified rifampicin called 24-desmethylrifampicin, derived from a rifamycin analogue, which is strongly antibacterial against many rifampicin-resistant M. tuberculosis strains.

06/05/2014 - 11:00

Psoriasis is a common, long-lasting disease that causes itchy or sore patches of thick, red skin with silvery scales. Environmental contaminants can trigger psoriasis and other autoimmune disorders, and it is thought that a protein called the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), which senses environmental toxins, could play a role. A study published by Cell Press on June 5 in the journal Immunity shows that the severity of inflammation associated with psoriasis is unexpectedly suppressed by AhR. The findings suggest that stimulation of AhR could improve symptoms and may represent a novel strategy for treating chronic inflammatory skin disorders.