Natural Treatments for Autoimmune Diseases

Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook

If you have an autoimmune disease, recipes can often be hard to find and you are often told the huge amounts of things like chocolate and certain foods with too high of a fat content that you can and can't eat. This eBook gives recipes that anyone can prepare without too much trouble. Even if you don't like cooking, this book makes cooking easy and breaks it down into steps. Best of all, the recipes do not taste like healthy medicine recipes. These recipes are delicious foods that anyone would want to eat, even if they didn't have to eat healthy. This book contains over 70 amazing recipes for anyone with an autoimmune disorder. The book comes with two free ebooks: 7 Steps to Living Well With an Autoimmune Disorder and The Top 10 Autoimmune Diseases Checklist. If you want to learn about your autoimmune disease and the best and worst foods for you, this is the book for you! More here...

Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook Overview


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This book comes with the great features it has and offers you a totally simple steps explaining everything in detail with a very understandable language for all those who are interested.

All the modules inside this book are very detailed and explanatory, there is nothing as comprehensive as this guide.

Influence of FcyRIIa Polymorphism in Infectious or Autoimmune Disease

A few early studies have examined whether expression of the FcyRIIa-Arg His131 polymorphism influences susceptibility to infectious or autoimmune disease. In theory, the weaker binding of human IgG2 to the FcyRIIa-Arg131 variant suggests that this gene might be overrepresented among patients with recurrent infections characterized by certain microbes with polysaccharide coats (i.e., involving an IgG2 antibody response) and overrepresented in disease characterized by circulating immune complexes (because phagocytic cells bearing the FcgRIIa-His131 variant would clear these complexes more readily). Certainly, a skewed genotypic distribution favoring the FcyRIIa-Arg131 variant has been noted in patients with Haemophilus influenzae infections (Sanders et al., 1994) and meningococcal septic shock (Bredius et al., 1994b). Furthermore, there is also predominance of FcgRIIa-Arg131 in patients with elevated levels of immune complexes and glo-merulonephritis complicating systemic lupus...

Humoral Immunity As Indirect Evidence For Autoimmunity In Ms

Molecular studies indicate that production of Abs in the CNS of MS patients is antigen-driven, making an indirect case for autoimmunity. The complementarity-determining regions (CDR) of Abs are the antigen-binding sites, and include the Ig heavy-chain variable (VH) region. Somatic hypermutations occur in the CDR when B-cells are exposed to their antigen these mutations often lead to amino acid substitutions that enhance Ig affinity for target antigen leading to affinity maturation.''

Using animal models to understand genetic contributions to autoimmunity

Rodent models of autoimmune disease have formed an important component of the scientific strategy to better understand the pathophysiology of these disorders ever since autoimmune diseases were originally described. Genetic tools and manipulation have in recent years allowed these rodent models to assume a new importance. Three major approaches have been used to study autoimmunity in murine models genetic linkage, genetic manipulation using transgenics and knockout models of individual genes and systematic mutagenesis strategies. Mouse strains exist which have an innate liability to develop autoimmune disease which resembles the diseases seen in man. Mouse models of autoimmunity that require antigenic induction of the disease phenotype (e.g. extrinsic allergic encephalomyelitis EAE or collagen-induced arthritis) provide an opportunity to map strain-specific susceptibility determinants. Spontaneous forms of autoimmunity are less artificial, the two most widely utilized being the...

Hsp70 Family Members Danger Signals And Autoimmunity

Abstract The 70 kiloDalton family of heat shock proteins (Hsp70) are known to stimulate immune responses and have been increasingly implicated in autoimmune conditions. Hsp70 proteins are present in pathogens as well as in healthy cells. They can be expressed constitutively or elevated in response to heat or other cellular stress. Immune responses stimulated by Hsp70 family members include triggering of innate inflammatory responses, enhancing antigen presentation to self-reactive T cells, and cross priming of chaperoned tumor and other self antigens. In this chapter, we present an overview of immunomodu-latory activities described for Hsp70 proteins and review the evidence implicating Hsp70 activity in autoimmunity. The ability of Hsp70 to stimulate anti-self tumor immunity and the prospect of using Hsp70 in vaccines or as adjuvants for cancer immunotherapy will be examined. Finally we discuss potential mechanisms by which Hsp70 proteins act as danger signals and regulatory molecules...

Autoimmunity And The Hosttumor Relationship

Although Paul Ehrlich (Ehrlich and Morgenroth, 1957) argued that the organism should never react to its own tissues, during the last century a number of diseases resulting from immune reactions within the organism to its own or self' antigens have now been described. A discussion of the development of autoimmune disease is beyond the scope of this text however, the interested student may consider the following references Schwartz, 1993 Eisenbarth and Bellgrau, 1994 Mayes, 1999 Bach, 1995. Interestingly, Prehn and Prehn (1987) have presented arguments that neoplasia, at least in part, should itself be considered an autoimmune disease. However, here are considered only an artificially induced autoimmune condition leading to neo-plastic development and its potential application as well as some examples of autoimmunity stimulated in the host by antigens present in neoplasms. An artificial autoimmune disease has been induced in rodents by the production of runt disease resulting from a...

Myasthenia Gravis

Myasthenia gravis is a common cause of ocular complaints, often diagnosed late. It may present as weakness of one muscle or one eye or any com Look at the patient's eyes and keep looking. She may blink three times with blinks of the same duration and the same interval between blinks, but she does not open as wide after each blink. Then, in the fourth blink, she keeps her eyes closed for 10-20 s. She is not sleeping and you are not that boring when she finally opens her eyes after the long blink, her ptosis is less pronounced and you can see more of her eyes. She then has three or four of her usual blinks with her ptosis increasing and then has another long blink. You are looking at a patient with myasthenia gravis. When the eye opening muscles are weak and the eye closing muscles are also weak, the diagnosis is almost always either myasthenia gravis or one of the CPEOs (see the following section). Therefore, when the patient has pto-sis (you know the eye openers are weak) test the eye...

In Vivo Immune Effects Of Senescent T Cells

The significant correlation between high proportions of CD8+CD28 T cells and poor antibody response to influenza vaccination documented in two independent clinical studies (Goronzy et al., 2001 Saurwein-Teissl et al., 2002) provides an example of putative suppressive effects of senescent CD8+ T cells on the function of other immune cells. Senescent CD8+ T cells have also been associated with suppressive effects in organ transplant patients. Donor-specific CD8+CD28 T cells are detectable in the peripheral blood of those patients with stable function of heart, liver and kidney transplants, whereas no such cells were found in patients undergoing acute rejection (Cortesini et al., 2001). Although in the context of organ transplantation, suppression may lead to a favorable outcome, in many other contexts, the CD8+CD28 T cell populations are associated with deleterious effects. For example, expanded populations of CD8+CD28 T cells are present in ankylosing spondylitis patients, and, in...

Alzheimers Disease And Atherosclerosis

Importantly, several types of infections have been hypothesized to increase the risk of CVD by causing systemic inflammation, or by triggering autoimmunity, for example, by cross-reactivity of heat shock proteins (hsp) with bacterial antigens (Mayr et al., 1999). Indeed, clinically healthy volunteers with sonographically documented carotid artery atherosclerosis have significantly increased antibody titers to hsp 65 compared to controls with no lesions, and in follow-up studies, those with highest titers showed highest mortality. The blocking of the hsp65 effect by T cell immunosuppressive agents further implicates specific immunity in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis. Most recently, there was a report showing expanded populations of senescent CD8+ T cells in patients with coronary artery disease as compared to controls, further underscoring the potential involvement of chronic antigen-driven proliferation in atherosclerosis (Jonasson et al., 2003).

Intercurrent Factors With Possible Association

Although the prevailing wisdom is that MS is an immune-mediated condition (102), it fulfills few of the criteria of an autoimmune disease (103). Rose and Bona (104) stated that'' with new knowledge gained from molecular biology and hybridoma technology, as well as the original Witebsky postulates, evidence that a human disease is autoimmune in origin includes direct evidence from transfer of pathogenic antibody or pathogenic T-cells indirect evidence based on reproduction of the autoimmune disease in experimental animals and circumstantial evidence from clinical clues.'' But MS certainly cannot fulfill Koch's postulates (direct evidence) due to the ethical problems of the necessary experiment, and satisfies their criteria only by the indirect evidence of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). The problem with this is that there are important pathological as well as clinical differences between EAE and MS, as remarked by Chaudhuri and Behan (103), who have The evidence that...

Success and failure of treatment

Low CD4 cells at baseline as well as low viral load before the start of therapy are just two of many factors (Florence 2003, Kaufmann 2005, Moore 2005, Wolbers 2007). Age also plays an important role in older patients, immunological response is often only moderate in comparison to virological response. Several studies demonstrated that the probability of not achieving a rise in the CD4-cell count increases with patient age and with progressive decrease in thymus size as detected by computed tomography (Goetz 2001, Marimoutou 2001, Piketty 2001, Teixera 2001, Viard 2001, Wolbers 2007). Patients who are intravenous drug users also have relatively poor increases in CD4 cells (Dragstedt 2004). In the Swiss cohort, the CD4 cells increased more in women than in men (Wolbers 2007). Other causes for a lack of immunological response may be immuno- or myelosup-pressive concomitant therapies. We have seen patients, who have had a suppressed viral load below 50 CD4 cells l for years, who only...

Chronic Diseases and Neurocognition

Negative cognitive outcomes are also associated with type I and type II diabetes mellitus, pulmonary diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma, hepatic diseases such as cirrhosis, kidney diseases, autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus, various cancers, sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea, and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) (see Bellia et al, 2007 Biessels et al, 2008 Borson et al, 2008 Kurella et al, 2005 Tarter et al, 2001 Zhang et al, 2007).

Influence of Age Related Decline in Immune Function and Influence on Intestinal Bifidobacteria Microbiota

Immunosenescence is defined as the state of deregulated immune function that contributes to the increased susceptibility of the elderly to infection and, possibly, to autoimmune diseases and cancer (49,50). When immunosenescence appears, the functional capacity of the immune system of the host gradually declines with age. The most dramatic changes in immune function with age occur within the T cells compartment, the arm of the immune system that protects against pathogens and tumors (51-54). The fact that T lymphocytes are more severely affected than B cells or antigen-presenting cells is mainly due to the involution of the thymus, which is almost complete at the age of 60. The host is then dependent on the T cells of various specificities, which eventually leads to changes in the T cell repertoire. CD45RA + native cells are replaced by CD45RA memory cells, and a T cell receptor oligoclonality develops. At the same time, T cells with signal transduction defects accumulate. Age-related...

How Does Heparin Transform Pf4 Into An Alloantigen

Antibodies to self-antigens, including certain autologous plasma proteins, can develop as a result of immune dysfunction, triggering autoimmune disease. Sometimes, however, formation of complexes between an autologous protein and a foreign substance leads to new antigens on the self protein, which can be described as cryptic alloantigens or neoantigens. Figure 2 shows how the PF4 tetramer can be modified by its binding to heparin, thereby exposing neoepitopes that were masked on native PF4. The immune stimulation resulting from such an altered self-epitope abates quickly once the inducing foreign substance is no longer present. Such a model explains some of the clinical events observed in HIT (see Chapter 2). In HIT, PF4 constitutes the self antigen, forming an alloantigen when complexed with heparin, particularly when both PF4 and heparin are present at the stoichiometric concentrations that allow formation of multimolecular

Adrian P Kelly and John Trowsdale

The MHC, the region of the genome widely believed to be associated with disease resistance, is in fact linked with more disease susceptibility than any other region of the human genome (Price et al., 1999). One explanation for this paradox is that there is a net cost in providing resistance to infection. In other words, improved resistance to infection, manifest as a more effective immune response, results in a greater propensity to autoimmune disease. In this article we will explore this proposal by examining the main features of the MHC, the functions of the genes it contains and its role in disease (Lechler and Warrens, 2000 Marsh et al., 2000).

Neuropathological Findings in the PostHAART

One HAART-related effect that has attracted much comment is the emergence of a new condition termed the immune reconstitution syndrome (IRIS). In IRIS cases a sudden and usually fatal episode of encephalopathy follows the commencement of HAART and is associated with extensive demyelination and white-matter damage (75, 76). The myelin damage is accompanied by marked CD8 lymphocytic infiltrate of the brain parenchyma, suggesting that an immunological pathogenesis (75). In most subjects HAART has a positive effect on the systemic immune system, resulting in increased CD4 counts and restoration of immune function. The subsequent upturn in the numbers of circulating CD4 and CD8 lymphocytes may result in sudden massive influx of these cells into the brain (75). No information is available with regard to the viral load in brain tissue in these cases. Although there is an assumption that the observed demyelination is caused by the influx of auto-immune lymphocytes into the brain, it should be...

Environmental effects

The environment plays a major role in determining the onset and course of most autoimmune diseases. These effects contribute up to 40 of the susceptibility (Janeway et al., 2001). Most environmental factors remain to be determined although there has been no shortage of candidates. One reason why they may be so difficult to identify is that the disease symptoms may develop many years after the triggering events in the environment. Top of the list of candidates for the environmental triggers are infections. Intestinal bacteria are obvious candidates for the HLA-B27-associated conditions. Although many different organisms have been proposed as triggers, identification of precise microbial species has proved elusive so far. It may turn out that the triggers include a variety of non-specific infections. An interesting alternative possibility is that infections act to prevent disease by shaping the T cell repertoire and it is the lack of such infections in modern western cultures that may...

Mechanisms for MHC associations

Several plausible mechanisms have been proposed to explain the MHC association with autoimmunity but in no case has the precise mechanism been identified. Identification of the mechanism involved in autoimmunity is confounded by the problem that the symptoms of disease tend to occur long after the initiating events. By the time the condition has been diagnosed the inflammation around the target tissue has stimulated recruitment of T cells to a wide range of antigens. One popular idea is the molecular mimicry hypothesis. It is proposed that T cells activated by presentation of a microbial antigen cross-react with peptides present in a self antigen. The associations of particular MHC alleles arise because these would be the allotypes that present the microbial peptide or the cross-reactive self peptide. In summary, the current view of autoimmune disease involves a predisposition resulting from a combination of genetic and environmental effects. HLA provides the major genetic...

Response To Immunosuppressive Therapies Suggests An Autoimmune Etiology

Glucocorticoids have a multitude of inhibitory effects on the immune system. They decrease expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as TNFa, IL-2, and IFN-y (117,118). In most studies, they have been shown to increase expression of anti-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-10 and TGFp-1 (119,120). Glucocorticoids also decrease MHC I and MHC II expression (121), induce T-cell apoptosis (122), inhibit nitric oxide synthesis (123), decrease expression of the adhesion molecules E selectin and ICAM-1 (124), decrease CSF matrix metalloproteinase 9 levels (125), decrease CSF IgG (126), and inhibit macrophage phagocytosis (127). Likewise, IFN-p induces a shift toward Th2 T-cell responses (128), inhibits T-cell activation (129), inhibits metalloproteinase-9 production (130), decreases Thl cytokine levels (131), modulates adhesion molecule activity (130,132), and has other anti-inflammatory effects that are still being elucidated (133). Glatiramer acetate alters the Th1 Th2 balance toward Th2...

Applications for Transient Gene Therapy

The technical innovations described above are at best laboratory proofs that will require extensive animal studies before clinical testing. However, the clinical data to date suggests that success with currently available Ad vectors is possible in applications where transient expression might be sufficient. For example, studies of therapeutic angiogenesis for coronary artery disease described above are a prototype of this type of application. Medical indications such as cancer, infectious disease, tissue remodeling (angiogenesis, recovery from surgery, stroke, or injury) are areas where development might be most appropriate. In contrast, metabolic and genetic disease, autoimmune disease, and other chronic conditions would seem to need substantial advances in adenoviral vector design or more likely some kind of hybrid vector before they become treatable on a persistent basis. Importantly, the knowledge of the cellular and host response to Ad infection in humans is still quite...

Proinflammatory Function For Grp94

Relating to the observations noted above, the Kaufman laboratory has reported an unexpected link between danger signals (i.e. adjuvants), inflammation, and activation of the unfolded protein response signaling pathway (Zhang et al., 2006). It is well established that the accumulation of unfolded proteins in the ER triggers the unfolded protein response (UPR), which leads to the activation of a transcriptional program yielding a pronounced up-regulation of ER chaperone synthesis. Kaufman's group has found that pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-ip and IL-6), and more significantly LPS, also activate the UPR signaling pathway both in vivo and in vitro. The exact mechanism leading to UPR signaling after detection of LPS or pro-inflammatory cytokines is not yet known these findings nonetheless provide a glimpse into the signaling pathways operating in response to adjuvant administration in the animal. This research points to new avenues of research that can be pursued in an effort to...

What Is The Pathogenic Role Of Inflammation In Ms

Lesion, including interleukin-1,2,4,6,10,12, gamma-interferon (y-IFN), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-a), and transforming growth factor beta (TGF-p) (16,17). Activated endothelial cells in active lesions express adhesion molecules, fibronectin, urokinase plasmin activator receptor, major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules, chemokines and their receptors, and stress proteins (18). In some MS patients, immunodominant peptides of MBP become complexed with DR2 molecules at sites of demyelination (19), and T-cell clones with receptors specific for MBP have been found in MS lesions (20). These observations, coupled with the pathologic similarities between MS and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), suggest that MS is an autoimmune disease, initiated by MHC-class II-restricted CD4+ Th1 lymphocytes that produce pro-inflammatory Th1 cytokines. This leads to the recruitment and activation of hematogenous macrophages, which destroy myelin sheaths, either via toxic...

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Multiple mechanisms have been postulated to be the cause of the sporadic form of the disease, including excitotoxicity (118,119), oxidative injury (120), cytoskeletal abnormalities with aggregates containing SOD1 (121), and autoimmunity (122,123). Up to 70 of sporadic cases have varying loss of the glutatmate transporter, EAAT2 (118,124). Aberrant EAAT2 mRNA species seem to account for the regional selective loss of EAAT2, most likely the result of RNA processing errors (125).

Interstitial pneumonia in not overtly immunocompromised persons

Totani and co-workers (2001) described an HHV-6-positive interstitial pneumonitis in a 47-year-old woman with Sjoegren's syndrome and Lupus erythematosus. Both autoimmune diseases were previously shown to be accompanied by higher incidences of HHV-6 reactivation (Krueger et al., 1991 De Clerck et al., 1992).

The choice between Thl and Th2 responses animal models

The type, dose and route of antigen can influence subsequent T cell responses. Mycobacterial antigens such as purified protein derivative of tuberculin (PPD) induce a Th1 response, whereas parasite antigens such as Toxocara excretory substance induce a Th2 response. Low doses of parasites (e.g. Leishmania major or Trichiuris muris) tend to induce Th1 responses, whereas high doses induce Th2 responses (Abbas et al 1996, Constant & Bottomly 1997). Similarly, immunization of mice with 107 Mycobacterium vaccae induces a Th1 response, whereas 109 organisms induce a mixed response (Hernandez-Pando & Rook 1994). Efficient uptake and presentation by dendritic cells and macrophages, which both produce IL-12, probably contribute to the induction of Th1 responses. Low or high doses of soluble protein, on the other hand, tend to induce Th2 responses (reviewed by Constant & Bottomly 1997). In contrast to the parenteral administration of antigen, oral administration suppresses immune...

Aging And Longevity Of Species

The extraordinary capacity of centenarians to achieve exceptional old age is due to some extent to their ability to counter the increased cellular stress normally associated with aging. Hsp70 protein induction by heat is reduced in the cells of most aged humans but not in centenarians. This effect is likely due to potent HSF-1 activity. As a matter of fact, HSF-1 has auxiliary factors that contribute to its activation, and could be involved in the age-associated attenuation in the response to stress (Shamovsky and Gershon, 2004). Another study reported that low circulating serum levels of Hsp70 in centenarians could well correlate with the absence of a disease state, since damage to tissues or organs as observed in cardiovascular disease or autoimmune diseases would result in high serum levels of Hsp70 (Kroll, 2005).

Induction by Dendritic Cells Loaded with Commensal Bacteria Focuses the Process Within the Mucosal Immune System

As described in Sect. 2.1, the systemic immune system of SPF mice remains ignorant of their commensal intestinal flora, but specific serum IgG responses can easily be induced by administration of 104-106 live organisms into the tail vein. On one hand, it makes good sense that the systemic immune system is not repeatedly primed to commensal organisms, because the diverse responses (which would be largely superfluous since innate mechanisms are very effective at killing these bacteria) could potentially trigger allergy or autoimmunity. On the other, it is important not to be generally tolerant of commensal bacteria, as this may lead to an inability to mount neutralising responses against pathogenic bacterial epitopes. The question is, how can a powerful mucosal immune response be achieved while maintaining systemic ignorance of commensals

HAART Influence on muco cutaneous diseases

Immunosuppressive therapies, such as ultraviolet light and cyclosporin, should be limited to a few conditions such as severe autoimmune diseases, and used only with careful clinical and laboratory monitoring. Photo(chemo)therapy is able to provoke viral infections such as herpes zoster and herpes simplex, epithelial tumors, and to increase the HIV viral load. Despite this, we have seen the benefit of narrowband UVB phototherapy in HIV-infected patients with extreme pruritus associated with papular dermatoses or eosinophilic folliculitis, resistant to all other therapies. As long as these patients were under the protection of HAART, UV therapy caused no observable worsening of the immune status.

Stratospheric Ozone Layer

On the other hand, recent work suggests that increased UVR at high latitudes could have some population health benefits, helping to prevent certain autoimmune diseases. 2 Further research is needed to quantify the optimum dose of sunlight exposure, depending on factors including age, ethnicity, behaviour, latitude, cloud cover and stratospheric ozone depletion (SOD). The health impacts of SOD are difficult to quantify, but broad projections of the burdens of skin cancer and other UV-related disease under various scenarios of emission containment have been estimated- (see Figure 2).

Neuromyelitis Optica Devic Disease

NMO is an idiopathic inflammatory CNS demyelinating disease characterized by either monophasic or relapsing attacks of optic neuritis and myelitis. Pathologically, NMO lesions demonstrate extensive demyelination across multiple spinal cord levels, associated with necrosis and cavitation, as well as acute axonal damage in both gray and white matter. There is a pronounced loss of oligodendrocytes within the lesions, and inflammatory infiltrates are comprised of large numbers of macrophages associated with large numbers of perivascular granulocytes and eosinophils, as well as rare CD3+ and CD8+ T-cells. A pronounced vasculocentric deposition of immunoglobulin and complement C9 neo antigen is associated with prominent vascular fibrosis and hyalinization in both active and inactive lesions (Figure 13) (155). These findings implicate a potential role for specific autoantibody and local activation of complement in this disorder's pathogenesis. This hypothesis is supported by serologic and...

Diseases Caused by the Immune System

Immune mechanisms that normally protect the body are very complex and subject to errors that can result in diseases. Autoimmune diseases and allergies are two categories of disease that are not caused by an invading pathogen, but rather by a derangement in the normal functions of the immune system. Diseases caused by the immune system can be grouped into three interrelated categories (1) autoimmune diseases, (2) immune complex diseases, and (3) allergy, or hypersensitivity. It is important to remember that these diseases are not caused by foreign pathogens but by abnormal responses of the immune system. Autoimmune diseases are those produced by failure of the immune system to recognize and tolerate self-antigens. This failure results in the activation of autoreactive T cells and the production of autoantibodies by B cells, causing inflammation and organ damage (table 15.10). There are over forty known or suspected autoimmune diseases that affect 5 to 7 of the population. Two-thirds of...

Cysteine proteinase inhibitors

Sloane et al. (1990) reviewed some of the literature where reductions in stefin levels have occurred with tumour progression and have speculated that this might be responsible for the enhanced levels of cyteine proteinase activity associated with tumour progression, as discussed above. The view that endogenous inhibitors may regulate the activity of proteinases, and thereby control cancer cell invasion, is amply supported by the abolition by the cysteine proteinase inhibitor E-64 of the in vitro invasion by EJ bladder carcinoma, and by the inhibition in vivo of vascular dissemination and formation of metastasis by EJ cells (Redwood et al., 1992). Stefins have been isolated from several forms of human cancer and stefin A, and not stefin B, appears to be responsible for the inhibition of cathepsin B activity in sarcomas and ovarian carcinomas (Lah et al., 1989, 1990). In lung cancers, cathepsin B is found in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, partly in complex with stefins A and B....

Infant feeding patterns

An early introduction of cow's milk-based infant formulas and other cow's milk products may increase the risk of type 1 diabetes according to case-control evidence, although the results remain inconclusive (Virtanen et al. 1991 Virtanen & Knip 2003). An early introduction of cow's milk or a short exclusive breastfeeding were not related to early stages of beta-cell autoimmunity in birth cohort studies of individuals with increased genetic risk of type 1 diabetes (Norris et al. 1996 Couper et al. 1999 Hummel et al. 2000 Kimpimaki et al. 2001 Norris et al. 2003 Ziegler et al. 2003), but inversely to the development of four type 1 diabetes-associated autoantibodies out of the four studied (Kimpimaki et al. 2001). The findings from a pilot study of the only randomised trial available suggest that beta-cell autoimmunity can be prevented or delayed by giving hydrolysed infant formula instead of regular cow's milk-based one (Akerblom et al. 1999). Several theories try to explain the...

Models of Immune Function in Aging

The most prevalent rodent models used in aging research are relatively healthy long-lived rats and mice and shortlived mice. The short-lived mice typically spontaneously develop a particular disease or are genetically altered. This review focuses on the most prevalent disease model, the autoimmune-prone mouse, to study the impact of diet on aging. The benefit of these mice is that their life span is half that of the long-lived strains, allowing for data to be generated faster. Specifically, evidence showing the beneficial effects of feeding calorie restriction, omega-3 fatty acids, and combining calorie restriction with omega-3 fatty acid feeding is discussed. Overall, the published data support the observation that the combination of calorie restriction and omega-3 fatty acid feeding is the most beneficial at delaying the onset of autoimmune disease in mice. In order to properly extrapolate this data to humans, the differences in TandB cell immunology between humans and rodents are...

Testing Dietary Interventions in Autoimmune Prone Mice to Delay Aging and Age Associated Diseases

Research because CR is the only known experimental regimen to increase life span in all experimental models tested including yeast, nematodes, flies, and rodents (Jolly, 2004). The models examined are not malnourished because the CR diets have enriched vitamin and mineral content to compensate for the decreased food intake. CR is also potent at delaying the onset of diseases like autoimmune disease and certain types of cancer. Therefore, it appears that CR may be a dietary regimen that not only increases life span by altering the biological process of aging, but also improves the quality of life by decreasing the severity of age-related diseases. proinflammatory transcription factor nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kB) activation (Jolly, 2004). In peripheral blood, CR blunted the disease-induced increases in IL-2 and IFN-y production by both CD4 and CD8 T cell subsets as well as IL-5 production in CD4 T cells (Jolly, 2004). In contrast, CR reduced the disease-associated increase in IFN-y...

Autoimmune Prone Mice as a Model of Chronic Inflammation and Heart Disease

Omega-3 fatty acids can be derived from many food sources. Flaxseed oil, enriched in linolenic acid, and fish oil, enriched in eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahex-aenoic acid, are the two sources of omega-3 fatty acids that have been commonly used to examine the anti-inflammatory properties of omega-3 fatty acids. However, direct comparisons of the two oils are limiting in the literature. Recent evidence suggests that both flaxseed and fish oil could decrease T-lymphocyte proliferation ex vivo in rats, but fish oil was the most potent. Whether this translates into fish oil being the most effective at delaying the onset of heart disease and or autoimmune disease needs to be directly addressed.

Human Immunodeficiency Virus and Lupus

Other work has inferred cognitive state from ERP observed in the oddball paradigm. Chao and colleagues (Chao et al, 2004) found that HIVpositive individuals had decreased P200 and 300 amplitudes and longer P300 latencies than controls. Moreover, among HIV-positive patients, depressive symptoms were positively correlated with N1 latency. Similar slowing of components was observed by Jabbari et al (1993). Among HIV-positive patients relative to controls, they suggest that diffuse EEG slowing may be associated with increased reaction time, there may be lower amplitude of visual evoked potentials and brain-stem evoked potentials, and there may be prolonged P300 and N2 latency (Jabbari et al, 1993). The increased latency of N100 and N200 waves in the oddball task was confirmed in a sample with HIV-positive homosexual males and control participants (Bungener et al, 1996). An association was also found between decreased P300 amplitude and emotional blunting. Similarly, in a study of the...

The Pro And Antiinflammatory Properties Of The Stress Protein Gp96

Abstract Although the stress protein gp96 is commonly perceived as being a universal activator of antigen presenting cells and an inducer of tumour-specific immunity, at high doses it can inhibit the induction of tumour-specific immunity and experimental autoimmune disease by a mechanism which appears to involve immunoregulatory CD4+ T cells. Studies have shown that gp96 can also delay the rejection of allogeneic skin and cardiac transplants. This chapter summarises the work which has attributed pro- and anti-inflammatory properties to gp96 and highlights the potential mechanisms that might mediate the dual functionality of this molecule

Inflammatory Autoimmune

Pemphigus is a rare disease that affects mucosal membranes. Although the term pemphigus may be erroneously used interchangeably with the condition bullous pemphigoid, it is a separate entity warranting a separate discussion. Pemphigus is characterized by vesicular lesions and bulla. There are multiple subtypes, with pemphigus vulgaris and pemphigus foliaceus being the most common (7). Other subtypes include pemphigus vegetans, pemphigus erythematosus, pemphigus herpetiformis, paraneoplastic pemphigus, drug-induced pemphigus, and IgA pemphigus. Although it is a disease of all ages, it typically occurs between the ages of 30 and 60. Pemphigus affects males and females equally. There is no known ethnic predilection. Its pathogenesis stems from an autoimmune mechanism in which circulating antibodies target keratinocyte cell surfaces. Cell-to-cell adhesion is disrupted and antibody complexes activate the complement cascade, creating local tissue damage. The cause of this...

Biochemistry And Pathology Of Macular Degeneration

Furthermore, the codistribution of IgG and terminal complement complexes in drusen implicates an immune response directed against retinal antigens, and the immune complex formation might be taking place at the site of drusen formation. This hypothesis is supported by the presence of putative anti-retinal autoantibodies in the sera of patients with ARMD. Anti-retinal autoantibodies previously have been reported in a number of ocular disorders, including retinitis pigmentosa, paraneoplastic retinopathies, and retinal vasculitis (Anderson et al., 2002). In addition, patients with membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis, in which complement activation and immune complex deposition cause glomerular injury, develop drusen deposits resembling those in ARMD in ultrastructure and composition including C5 and IgG. However, the role of antiretinal autoantibodies in the pathogenesis of ARMD has not been examined in detail. It remains unknown whether the initiation of chronic inflammation and...

Pemphigus And Pemphigoid

Pemphigus and pemphigoid are autoimmune diseases that produce blistering of skin and or mucosa. In pemphigus, intraepithelial blistering is caused by destruction of desmogleins that connect epithelial cells. Its most common variant, pemphigus vulgaris, begins with ulcerating lesions in the mouth, as the outer epithelium of the blister sloughs. Later, skin is also involved. In pemphigoid, the basement membrane is attacked, resulting in subepithelial blisters. Mucosal involvement nearly always begins in the mouth and can spread as far caudal as the larynx. It does not involve the subglottis or trachea (7). Pemphigoid is a subepithelial blistering disease that affects skin and mucous membranes, including the nose and larynx (8).

Acquired inflammatory neuropathies

Acquired peripheral neuropathies are broadly classified into acute and chronic inflammatory demyelinating neuropathies (AIDP and CIDP, respectively). Clinical forms of these neuropathies are many, and all of them proceed with sensory abnormalities or motor weaknesses, or a combination of both. Pathogenetically inflammatory neuropathies belong to autoimmune diseases the actual neuropathy

Interactions Between Medical Illness and Psychiatric Symptoms Longitudinally

For many such illnesses, including MS, IBD, sickle cell, and others, these relapses are associated with significant increases in psychiatric symptoms such as depression and anxiety (Dalos et al, 1983 Graff et al, 2009 Levenson et al, 2008), which can result in a unique set of disease-related effects on psychiatric outcomes in an RCT (see arrow (d)). MS is a good example of this phenomenon. Multiple sclerosis is in part an autoimmune disease in which many patients experience sudden exacerbations or increases in inflammation and symptoms that can last a period of weeks or months. During disease exacerbation, distress may be experienced by as many as 90 of patients (Dalos et al, 1983). Depression in MS may be due in part to the increased inflammation and cytokine production that are part of the patho-genesis of multiple sclerosis (Gold and Irwin, 2006). Furthermore, these exacerbations are most commonly treated with high-dose infusions

Affected Organs And Cell Types In Polyomavirusassociated Disease And Persistent Virus Infection

The two human polyomaviruses BKV and JCV are associated with persistent infection and diseases of the urogenital tract and the central nervous system (CNS). Induction of disease by the viruses is regularly linked to states of im-munoincompetence. The most prominent underlying complications are AIDS and lymphoproliferative disorders. Moreover, iatrogenic immunosuppression in the course of transplantation or therapy of autoimmune disorders can contribute to polyomavirus-induced disease. Clinically overt disease usually correlates with enhanced activity of viral expression in the target organ of viral persistence. Detailed analysis of BKV- and JCV-associated diseases disclosed a variety of organs and cell types to be susceptible to virus infection. These observations fostered multiple studies on the molecular basis of polyomavirus persistence in the infected host. However, despite the availability of very sensitive techniques to discover virions and or viral products in tissue, body...

Heat Shock Proteins As Targets For Immune Cells

Once HSP appear on the cell surface, they are accessible to the immune surveillance system. HSP expressed on cell surfaces can elicit strong immune responses, as these molecules contain several highly conserved epitope sequences with strong immunogenic properties (Kaufmann and Schoel, 1994 Shinnick, 1991 Zugel and Kaufmann, 1999). On the other hand, an overzealous immune response to HSP can have several undesirable effects. Due to high degree of phylogenic conservation, HSP species of microbial origin and HSP molecules produced by stressed host cells have similar immunogenic properties (Zugel and Kaufmann, 1999). Moreover, abundantly expressed HSP undergo processing by antigen presenting cells, and cells expressing HSP alone or presenting them in the context of MHC molecules are recognized by immune cells as potential targets of self-reactive antibodies or lymphocytes with specificity for HSP (Kaufmann and Schoel, 1994 Zugel and Kaufmann, 1999). In a number of autoimmune disorders in...

Dairy products and probiotics in childhood disease

Although there is an increasing number of well designed RCTs indicating the benefits of probiotics, we still do not understand the mechanisms of their biological activity in detail. Consistent with this, the influence of long-term administration of probiotics on allergy, autoimmune diseases, and infection control has not been understood.

BCL6 Alterations in DLBCL

Extranodal marginal-zone lymphomas of mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT lymphomas) represent the majority of lymphomas that arise outside of primary hematopoietic tissues (lymph node, spleen, bone marrow) 1 . The cell of origin is thought to be a post-germinal center memory B cell which normally resides in the marginal zones that surround follicular mantles. As would be expected based on the cell of origin, the vast majority of MALT lymphomas lack expression of CD5 and CD10 1 . MALT lymphomas develop at sites that do not normally have lymphoid tissue but where lymphoid tissue has been acquired in response to a chronic infection or an autoimmune disease 71 . The most common site of MALT lymphoma development is the stomach, where Helicobacter pylori is the infectious agent causing acquisition of the reactive precursor MALT 72, 73 . MALT lymphomas that develop in the salivary gland or thyroid are preceded by reactive infiltrates related to the autoimmune diseases Sjogren's syndrome...

Stress and Allostatic Overload Related Illnesses

The interaction of stress and HPA function and immune function can also be described as an inverted U-shaped process (Calabrese, 2008b McEwen et al, 1997). A hypoactive HPA can lead to a hyperinflammatory and even a hyperimmune state. Specifically, a hypoac-tive HPA is associated with an increase risk for chronic inflammation (Elenkov et al, 1999 Webster et al, 1997, 1998) and also vulnerability to autoimmunity (Sternberg and Wilder, 1989). This increased risk is thought to involve a shift from T-helper 2 (cellular) immunity to T-helper 1 (humoral) immunity (Elenkov and Chrousos, 1999). While acute stress and exposure to low levels of corticosterone actually improve aspects of immunity and reduce inflammation, chronic stress and exposure to high levels of corticosterone dramatically reduce the delayed-type hypersensitivity response (Dhabhar and McEwen, 1997, 1999). Sorrells and Sapolsky (2007) have provided a thought provoking recent review, contrasting the well-established...

HCMV Vaccine What Is the Ideal Target Population Perinatal and Early Childhood HCMV Infection

Moreover, universal immunization against HCMV in early life may confer health benefits that extend ultimately to men as well as women of child-bearing age. Increasingly, HCMV infection has been tied to an increased lifetime risk of illnesses such as atherosclerosis, malignancies, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, and the phenomenon of immune senescence in later life (Soderberg-Naucler 2006). Prevention of HCMV infection, and conceivably elimination of infection through herd immunity, could provide widespread benefits for human health.

Neuromuscular Disorders

Myasthenia gravis (MG) is characterized by the gradual progression of weakness over several weeks to months. The weakness tends to progress throughout the day and is worsened with physical exertion. MG is an autoimmune disorder in which antibodies to acetylcholine receptors bind to the receptors on the postsynaptic membrane of the neuromuscular junction, causing internalization and degradation of the receptors. Dysphagia is the presenting sign in 6 to 15 of adult patients (10). Bulbar and facial muscles are often affected and those patients with bulbar involvement typically have worse dysphagia and often aspirate. Treatment initially consists of medication with Mestinon (pyridostigmine), an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, and possibly thymectomy. As disease progresses, some patients are offered plasmapheresis. Swallowing function varies as muscle function varies, so patients should be encouraged to eat early in the day and after medication.

Granulocyte Colony Stimulating Factor

Induction of autoimmunity to murine MuG-CSF required the use of immunostimu-latory MuG-CSF conjugates (39). Immunized mice developed neutropenia coincident with an IgG autoantibody response, without effect on other peripheral blood parameters or on the number of marrow progenitor cells. The neutropenia was sustained for > 9 mo. Hematologically, these mice phenocopied mice with absolute G-CSF deficiency owing to disruption of either the G-CSF ligand (40) or receptor (41) genes.

ELISA screening test

For screening tests, the emphasis is placed on sensitivity, as any failure to identify a positive sample correctly can have grave consequences. This high sensitivity, however, causes a somewhat lower specificity. This means that the test result may occasionally be a false-positive. The test result then erroneously indicates the presence of antibodies against HIV. Such false-positive results may be caused by immune stimulation of some sort (acute viral infections, pregnancy, immunizations, autoimmune diseases). Presently available HIV screening tests have a specificity of at least 99.5 i.e. among 4,000 HIV-negative samples tested, a maximum of 20 may show a false-reactive test result.


AIED can be defined as a fluctuating or rapidly progressing sensorineural hearing loss that is responsive to immunosuppressive therapy. Vestibular dysfunction may or may not be present. In some cases, a concurrent systemic autoimmune disorder exists at the time of diagnosis. Therefore, AIED can exist in isolation as an organ-specific disease (primary AIED) or can occur as a nonspecific injury as part of a systemic autoimmune disease (secondary AIED). Currently, there is no diagnostic laboratory test or imaging modality available to confirm the diagnosis with certainty.


I., Negrini, R., Moran, A. P., Aspinall, G. O., Forte,J. G., De, V. T., Quan, H., Verboom, T., Maaskant, J. J., Ghiara, P., Kuipers, E. J., Bloemena, E., Tadema, T. M., Townsend, R. R., et al., 1996, Potential role ofmolecular mimicry between Helicobacter pylori lipopolysaccharide and host Lewis blood group antigens in autoimmunity, Infection Immunity 64 2031-2040.

Immune System

Effectiveness of B cells is seen in the production of fewer antibodies and an impairment of their ability to differentiate between foreign invaders and the body's own cells. Consequently, the antibodies may attack the cells of the body itself, a so-called autoimmune disorder.


Patients with RP demonstrate both cell-mediated and humoral immunity against extracellular matrix components of cartilage, including type II, IX, and XI collagens, matrillin-1, cartilage oligomeric matrix protein, and proteoglycans. Evidence for cellmediated autoimmunity includes demonstration of T cells directed against type II collagen in patients with RP. Additionally, T cell clones have been isolated from an RP patient which were specific for an immunodominant epitope of type II collagen and were restricted to HLA-DRB1 * 0101 0401 alleles (9). T cell responses to type IX and XI collagens and matrillin-1 have also been reported in individual RP patients (10,11). Humoral autoimmunity is demonstrated by the presence of immunoglobulin and complement deposits in affected tissues (12). Additionally, circulating autoantibodies against native and denatured type II, IX, and XI collagens, as well as matrillin-1, are found in some patients with RP (13,14). The exact role that these...

Persistent Infection

Strominger screened a large number of peptides for degeneracy of amino acid side chains required for major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II binding and activation of myelin basic protein (MBP)-responsive T-cells (40). A panel of 129 peptides satisfying these criteria was identified, of which herpes simplex virus, EBV, adenovirus type 12, influenza type A, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa peptides gave the greatest activation of MBP-specific T-cell clones derived from MS patients. Collectively, these studies support the concept that multiple common infectious agents have the potential for triggering MS by a molecular mimicry mechanism. An alternative possibility for tissue injury might also involve molecular mimicry between infectious agent and host protein, but instead of a myelin protein, a regulatory protein in the immune system or a critical host enzyme might be the target, resulting in altered immune function, disruption of the blood-brain barrier, or interference with myelin...


Liu, B., Dai, J., Zheng, H., Stoilova, D., Sun, S. and Li, Z. (2003) Cell surface expression of an endoplasmic reticulum resident heat shock protein gp96 triggers MyD88-dependent systemic autoimmune diseases. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 100, 15824-9. Millar, D. G., Garza, K. M., Odermatt, B., Elford, A. R., Ono, N., Li, Z. and Ohashi, P. S. (2003) Hsp70 promotes antigen-presenting cell function and converts T-cell tolerance to autoimmunity in vivo. Nat. Med. 9, 1469-76.


Known mechanisms can involve antibody responses to cell surface or matrix components, for example in Goodpasture's syndrome, where the autoantigen is part of the basement membrane. This disease is organ-specific. In other cases, such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), the disease is systemic and multiple tissues and organs may be affected. Immune complexes are thought to play a major role in the pathology of systemic autoimmune disease. A third group of diseases is characterized by T cell destruction of tissues and associated activated cells. This type includes T1D and RA. The classification of autoimmune diseases as organ specific or systemic reflects the underlying etiology. In some families with organ-specific disease several family members may be affected but with different organs involved. Similarly, systemic autoimmunity can affect multiple individuals in a family or a single individual can have more than one systemic condition, such as SLE together with Sjogren's syndrome.

Infectious diseases

There is strong evidence for association of only a few infectious diseases with the MHC (Table 9.1, Figure 9.1) although infection is believed to drive MHC variation (see Chapter 18). It has been proposed that the emphasis on autoimmunity is largely because research funding for studying these diseases, prevalent in western populations, has greatly exceeded that for infections that are more usually consigned to poorer countries. In fact, the funding emphasis has shifted considerably since the emergence of modern infectious diseases such as AIDS and SARS. the host HLA molecules. Statistically, these escape variants tend to appear most often for those HLA allotypes that are most frequent in the infected population. Over time, in response to the infection, these allotypes may become less common in that population and eventually new variants of the pathogen may emerge. This pattern of adaptations both by the pathogen and by distribution of allotypes in host populations leads to a dynamic,...

Multiple sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic T-cell mediated demyelinating autoimmune disease of the central nervous system. Disease onset usually occurs between 20 and 40 years of age, after which progression is variable, but generally slow. The geographic distribution of the disease has led to much debate over the relative importance of racial susceptibility (presumably genetic) and environment. On the one hand, there is a strong gradient towards higher prevalence at higher latitudes, both north and south of the equator on the other, there are marked deviations from this pattern, including a high prevalence among Sardinians and Palestinians, and low prevalence among Chinese and Japanese, black Africans, Maoris and Amerindians (Rosati, 2001). Suspected environmental risk factors for MS include vitamin D insufficiency (with attendant reduction in the immune-suppressive effect of vitamin D), late- or post-childhood infection with Epstein-Barr virus (Martyn et al., 1993 Levin et al., 2003) and...


The human body is a nutrient rich environment and would be colonised rapidly by viruses, bacteria and other parasites if it were not protected by an immune system. This system not only recognises and destroys invading parasites (and even cancer cells), but does not attack the bodies own cells. Both properties are equally important for our survival. An attack of our immune system against our own cells is called autoimmune disease. Such diseases tend to be debilitating, protracted and eventually fatal. Examples are myasthenia gravis (antibody production against the muscle acetylcholine receptor), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) (reaction against nuclear antigens) or diabetes mel-litus type 1 (destruction of the -cells in the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas).


If clonality is recognized but the BMPC and cytologic atypia are borderline, a diagnosis of plasma cell dyscrasia is recommended with a comment that additional testing is required for definitive classification as outlined below. In the absence of clonality, a striking plasmacytosis (> 10 ) and plasma cell atypia may occur in certain chronic infections, especially HIV infection autoimmune diseases hypersensitivity disorders aplastic

Cystatin B

Type 2 cystatins are slightly larger molecules of 115 amino acids and a molecular size of 13 kDa. In contrast to type 1 cystatins, proteins of this group contain one or two disulfide loops near their C-terminus. Cystatin C is the best-characterized member of this category. It was isolated from serum of patients with autoimmune diseases (Brzin et al. 1984). A mutant cystatin C, with a Q68L substitution is a major constituent of amyloid fibrils in patients with hereditary cerebral hemorrhage with amyloidosis, described in Ireland (Ghiso et al. 1986).

Dnabased Vaccines

DNA can be produced on a large scale with great purity without the risk of contamination with potentially dangerous agents. In addition, DNA is extremely stable relative to proteins and other biological polymers. This approach allows specific genes to be expressed in nonreplicating vectors with the ability to manipulate the sequences to accommodate different subtypes and or parts of the genome of the organism of interest. Genes which lead to undesired immunologic inhibition or cross-reactivity (autoimmunity) may either be altered or deleted. In this way, genes which encode important immunologic epitopes can be included, while those that confer pathogenicity or virulence can be excluded. From the immunologic perspective, the ability to maintain DNA in an episomal form provides the potential for significant antigen expression. This has implications for the duration of immunologic memory responses, an important element of protective vaccine strategies. A...


Desmosomes Cadherins desmocollin and desmoglein are cross-linked to keratin filaments by adaptor proteins like placoglobin. These form a cytoplasmic plaque which is visible in EM. Because the keratin IF reaches through the cells, desmosomes can distribute forces between different layers of a tissue. Pemphigus vulgaris is an autoimmune disease caused by autoantibodies against desmoglein, one of the cadherins in desmosomes. This leads to disruption of desmosomes and thus to blistering of skin and mucus membranes.

Tick Paralysis

Onset of symptoms occurs 4 to 7 days after the tick attaches. Symptoms include weakness in the lower extremities, which ascends within hours or days to involve the trunk musculature, upper extremities, and head. Patients may present with ataxia or respiratory distress, and mortality rates of up to 10 have been reported. Analysis of CSF samples usually reveals no abnormalities, and the diagnosis is clinical and depends on a history of tick bite or finding a tick on the body of the patient. The differential diagnosis includes Guillain-Barre, Eaton-Lambert syndrome, myasthenia gravis, poliomyelitis, botulism, diphtheritic polyneuropathy, or any disease with an ascending flaccid paralysis or acute ataxia.


Myasthenia Gravis Myasthenia gravis is an autoimmune disorder with antibodies directed at the postsynaptic receptors for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. As the receptors are destroyed, the axonal nerve signals cannot be communicated to the muscles, resulting in progressive muscle fatigue and paralysis. Typical presentation is ocular weakness including ptosis and ophthalmoplegia and is present in 90 of the cases. The facial nerve can be involved with myasthenia gravis and can be unilateral or bilateral of varying severity (129,130). In rare cases, the facial nerve can even be involved without any ocular weakness (131). Diagnosis can be made by giving a test dose of edrophonium, because patients with myasthenia gravis show dramatic improvement in muscle weakness after intravenous infusion. Finding antibodies to the acetylcholine receptor in the serum is diagnostic. Treatment consists of anticholinesterase inhibitors that prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine at the neurosynaptic...


Inflammation of the glomeruli, or glomerulonephritis, is believed to be an autoimmune disease a disease that involves the person's own antibodies (as described in chapter 15). These antibodies may have been raised against the basement membrane of the glomerular capillaries. More commonly, however, they appear to have been produced in response to streptococcus infections (such as strep throat). A variable number of glomeruli are destroyed in this condition, and the remaining glomeruli become more permeable to plasma proteins. Leakage of proteins into the urine results in decreased plasma colloid osmotic pressure and can therefore lead to edema.

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