Antibodies attack immune proteins

Feb 01, 2010

Two studies published online on February 1 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine reveal that patients with a rare autoimmune disease produce antibodies that attack microbe-fighting immune proteins called cytokines. These findings may help explain why these patients suffer recurrent yeast infections.

Autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome, or APS-I, afflicts one in 100,000 people and is characterized by disrupted thyroid and adrenal gland function and recurrent skin infections with one type of yeast. Normally, the produces cytokines that help protect the body against airborne yeast and other environmental .

Two teams of researchers—one led by Anthony Meager at the National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (UK), and the other led by Desa Lilic at Newcastle University (UK) and Jean-Laurent Casanova at Rockefeller University (New York)—found that patients with APS-I produce autoantibodies that bind to and disarm these yeast-fighting cytokines.

It is not yet clear why these patients are prone to infection with only one type of yeast. But these studies suggest that cytokine replacement therapy might be considered in the treatment of APS-I patients.

Explore further: Beware of claims about cosmetic stem cells procedures, review says

More information:
-- Kisand, K., et al. 2010. J. Exp. Med. doi:1doi:10.1084/jem.20091983
-- Puel, A., et al. 2010. J. Exp. Med. doi:10.1084/jem.20091983

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Mounting a multi-layered attack on fungal infections

Sep 08, 2009

Unravelling a microbe's multilayer defence mechanisms could lead to effective new treatments for potentially lethal fungal infections in cancer patients and others whose natural immunity is weakened.

People with Job's syndrome lack specific immune cells

Mar 17, 2008

Scientists have made another major breakthrough--the second in the past year--in understanding a rare immune disorder called Job’s syndrome. Job’s syndrome is characterized by recurrent and often severe bacterial and ...

Recommended for you

Diet affects men's and women's gut microbes differently

18 hours ago

The microbes living in the guts of males and females react differently to diet, even when the diets are identical, according to a study by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin and six other institutions published ...

Researchers explore what happens when heart cells fail

19 hours ago

Through a grant from the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, Biomedical Engineering Associate Professor Naomi Chesler will embark upon a new collaborative research project to better understand ...

User comments : 0