Building blocks of the disease of the fight of happiness
Laughter is the best medicine – so it has long been popularly claimed. No wonder, because he laughs happily and who is happy, releases the hormones of happiness. The International Research Team recently discovered that one of the main hormones of the Happiness hormone actually strengthens our immune system and even contributes to the fight against disease.
Researchers at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology at the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA) and the Boston Children's Hospital in Harvard have recently demonstrated a completely new way of combating autoimmune diseases, asthma, allergies and even cancer. The focus of research is a building block with which the body produces the hormones of happiness serotonin and dopamine. The study team found that this building block also activates defense cells of the immune system. The results of the work have recently been published in the famous journal Nature.
What have common killer cells and hormones of happiness?
Both cell killers (T cells) of our immune system, as well as serotonin and dopamine, need the same building block to work. The international research team identified the Tetrahydrobiopterin Hormone Hormone (BH4) molecule as the primary activator of our defensive cells. "The fascinating thing about our discovery is that a system that is actually known in neurobiology can play a key role in the immune defense of T cells," IMBA director Josef Penninger said in a statement.
It is fighting independently against cancer
What the body is capable of recently has been proven by a new approach in which its own immune system deliberately activates itself to fight independently against cancer cells in the body. These findings were honored by the Nobel Prize for Medicine. In order to deepen their understanding of the immune defense, its activation, and the involved metabolic processes, the Penninger team examined the immune cell biology more closely and identified new opportunities for a comprehensive medical application.
Completely new and wide application possibilities
"This new approach connects two completely different systems in our body and differs from all previously known immunological checkpoints," Penninger said. This opens up a wide range of therapeutic options that can be used, for example, against inflammatory bowel disease, asthma, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, allergies, skin diseases or cancer.
BH4 makes soldiers immune system ready for combat
BH4 is known to scientists for some time. It is known that the molecule is involved in numerous metabolic processes. However, what's new is that BH4 also controls the growth of T cells that function as "soldiers of our immune system". According to the research, this process takes place through metabolism of iron. This is also why people with iron deficiency or anemia often suffer from immune problems.
How our immune system functions
The IMBA research team clearly explains the defense process of the immune system: "T cells patrol our bodies and exude pathogens or degenerate cells that can become tumors." When it comes to such a meeting, T cells will go through BH4 activated: you start to duplicate and start to fight. However, this can lead to misinterpretation, since incorrectly activated T cells begin to attack their own body cells. This event can cause allergic reactions and autoimmune diseases.
Targeted control of the immune system
"Autoimmune diseases and allergies are among the most commonly occurring diseases around the world, and emergency therapies are urgently needed," Penninger said. In a new approach to autoimmune diseases, BH4 is targeted to be inhibited, so that T cells are not placed in a constant attack mode. As a result, they will cease to destroy healthy tissue or cause chronic inflammation. The first clinical studies of the new drug KM385, which are said to inhibit BH4, are already in the initial blocks.
The process is reversed to fight cancer
The opposite is the case with cancer, where BH4 promotion can help the immune system to better detect and direct cancer cells. Initial mice tests have already shown that BH4 helps rodents fight the tumor. "If you can find cross-links of various biological systems in the body, such as the nervous system and immune system in this case, you can sometimes make stunning discoveries," the research team sums up their findings. (Vb)