Category Archives: Immunology, inflammation, infectiology and microbiology

New prebiotics: benefits without the downsides?

A research group led by Matteo Serino, Inserm researcher at the Digestive Health Research Institute (Inserm/Inra/ENVT/UT3 Paul Sabatier), has recently shown three plant extracts to have prebiotic effects in obese/diabetic mice, with a shorter duration of treatment and at lower doses to the prebiotics currently in use.

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High-risk pregnancy: the interferon effect

(Français) Des chercheurs ont identifié un nouveau mécanisme cellulaire qui altère la formation du placenta et pourrait ainsi provoquer des complications graves pendant la grossesse. Il est lié à la production d’interféron, une molécule qui est produite en réponse à certaines infections, notamment virales.

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Anaphylactic shock: IgG antibodies and neutrophils play an unexpected role

Anticorps. © Adobe Stock

Anaphylactic shock, an exacerbated allergic reaction that can prove fatal, is sometimes caused by the use of drugs during surgery. In most of these extreme reactions, evidence can be provided that patients have anti-drug antibodies of the IgE class. In 10 to 20% of anaphylactic cases evidence for the involvement of anti-drug IgE is lacking. Anti-drug IgE enable activation of mast cells and basophils that release histamine, a potent mediator involved in anaphylaxis. Teams of researchers have successfully identified a new pathological mechanism responsible for these previously unexplained cases.

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New Antibiotics Developed by Inserm and Université de Rennes 1

Résistances émergentes aux antibiotiques

Researchers from Inserm and Université de Rennes recently identified a new bacterial toxin which they transformed into potent antibiotics active against various bacteria responsible for human infections.

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Explaining Chronic and Relapsing Eczema

The researchers discovered that not only do the allergens persist in the skin for several weeks but also that they are not alone in doing so. Indeed, immune cells – known as tissue-resident memory T cells – proliferate at the lesion sites and remain there for long periods, reactivating the onset of eczema patches in the event of re-exposure to the allergen.

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L’hépatite D, un virus qui en utilise d’autres

(Français) Des recherches démontrent dans un modèle de souris au foie humanisé, que le VHD est capable in vitro et in vivo d’utiliser l’enveloppe d’autres virus que celle du VHB, comme celle du virus de l’hépatite C et de virus d’autres genres, comme celui de la dengue.

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Fertility and endometriosis: a research update from Inserm

Today, around 1 in 8 couples seek help because they are struggling to conceive. Infertility has therefore become a public health problem, and the scientific community is rallying in response.

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Flu Shot: Cutaneous Administration Improves Efficacy

The team of Béhazine Combadière, Inserm Research Director at Unit 1135 “Center for Immunology and Infectious Diseases”, has been working for years on the impact of vaccine administration routes on the quality of immune responses.

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Nanoblades: shuttles for genome surgery

Researchers are now able to edit the genome with precision using the “gene editing scissors” of CRISPR-Cas9, which is a highly promising tool for gene therapy. The technical challenge now is to get this tool into the genome of certain cells. With this in mind, a joint team from Inserm, the CNRS, the Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, and the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, working within the International Center for Infectiology Research (CIRI), have developed capsules that allow CRISPR-Cas9 to reach the target DNA: Nanoblades.

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HIV/tuberculosis co-infection: tunnelling towards better diagnosis

1.2 million people in the world are co-infected by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the bacteria which causes tuberculosis, and AIDS (HIV-1). This combination is deadly: it makes patient diagnosis and treatment difficult, and increases the pathogenicity of these two infectious agents. An international team led by researchers at the CNRS and Inserm have revealed that in the presence of tuberculosis, HIV-1 moves from one cell to the next via nanotubes which form between macrophages, drastically increasing the percentage of infected cells. These findings appear in the 26 March 2019 edition of Cell Reports.

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