Investigators at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research have discovered a protein in the human body that can trigger and mediate inflammation in patients suffering from hemorrhage and sepsis. The findings were published in the online version of Nature Medicine on October 6, 2013.
Thirty-seven million people are admitted to the emergency room with traumatic injury each year, and these injuries are a leading cause of death in the US. Two major reasons why traumatic injury is so deadly are loss of blood (hemorrhage) and a clinical condition called sepsis. Sepsis occurs when molecules released into the bloodstream to fight an injury or infection trigger inflammation throughout the body. Inflammation is necessary for maintaining good health – without inflammation, wounds and infections would never be controlled or heal. However, persistent and constant inflammation often results in organ dysfunction or damage, leading to patient death – 28 to 50 percent of people who suffer from sepsis die from the condition.
For years, Feinstein Institute scientists have been researching ways to treat sepsis by halting persistent and constant inflammation. As a result of this effort, Ping Wang, MD, director for the Laboratory of Surgical Research and head of the Center for Translational Research at the Feinstein Institute, and his colleagues discovered that a protein called cold-inducible RNA-binding protein (CIRP) is increased and released into the bloodstream in response to hemorrhagic shock and sepsis. When CIRP triggers inflammation, it contributes to damage of organs in the body. Dr. Wang hypothesized that if CIRP activity is blocked, causing reduced inflammation, then patient survival will improve. To test this theory, he and his colleagues observed that treatment with an antibody against CIRP significantly increased survival rates during hemorrhage and sepsis in preclinical studies.
Read more at: MedicalXpress