The effect of Covid on pregnant women is of great importance particularly in relation to the development of cytokine storms and the harmful effects these can have. A recent study published in Nature Immunology reported on maternal SARS-CoV2 infection and transmission of cytokines and antibodies to the neonate.
Cell Guidance Systems Blog
A healthy immune system is essential for defending against pathogens. However, it can also present as a liability rather than an asset. The greatest threat to survival in some of the most critical COVID-19 cases and other medical emergencies isn’t the infection itself, but rather an uncontrolled immune response to the infection that the human body sometimes generates. Understanding the genesis of a cytokine storm is key to developing strategies to prevent the immune system spiraling out of control.
Producing lab-grown meat – made with animal cells grown in bioreactors – is a promising avenue for sustainable meat production. However, scaling up this process to produce tons of meat at a reasonable cost is difficult. One of the hurdles in the scaling process is producing the large quantities of growth factors required for culturing muscle and other cells.
Growing evidence regarding the side effects of currently available anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs, antibiotics, etc.) and concerns around their appropriate role during cytokine storms has triggered a new era of innovation in the treatment of immune-mediated diseases. Owning to the ubiquitous nature and expanding role of cytokines in the various biological phenomena, anticytokine therapies have gained a leading role in this context.
Why COVID-19 pathogenesis varies so widely between different in SARS-CoV2 infected individuals has remained somewhat of a mystery. However, cytokines have served as a prognostic marker for COVID-19 disease course and outcome and their involvement is closely connected with the development of Long COVID.
Exosomes represent a potential sweet spot between small molecules, biologics, and cell therapies for a future as highly potent multifaceted biopharmaceuticals. Studies that are leading towards clinical applications have raised expectations that exosomes will eventually provide treatment for a wide range of orphan diseases. From basic research to clinical application, the ability to stably store exosomes whilst maintaining their unique characteristics is fundamental to their research and therapeutic development.
Exosomes and viruses have many things in common, including their size, lipid coat, and the ability to transport RNA and proteins between cells. Exosomes and viruses co-purify using techniques including size exclusion chromatography. Are these similarities a coincidence or is there a shared past?
Neutrophils and macrophages are key players in the early immune response to infection. In a recent paper, published in Science Advances, a team of researchers at Vanderbilt University have further explored neutrophil NETosis, a process whereby neutrophils initially secrete, and ultimately autolyse, to generate a sticky mesh which immobilizes the pathogen. The researchers have shown that this mesh actively enables and empowers the subsequent activity of macrophages.
Fetal maturation rate and birth timing are both regulated by factors including hormones, nutrients, and adipokines. Increasingly, the contribution of exosomes to the establishment of a successful pregnancy and delivery process is becoming clear. Exosomes regulate the physiology and metabolism of both the mother and the fetus by acting as messengers that carry specific biological signals between cells/tissues—generating an intimate relationship between them.
The long-term effects of disease and injury can arise from the body's efforts to regenerate damaged tissue. Scarring of the skin is one example. Internal scarring of tissue can also occur which can lead to more than superficial effects. In Covid 19 and other airway infections, pulmonary fibrosis, driven by cytokines, can have serious implications.