Connect with us

Economics

Dynamics of adaptive immunity in tuberculosis uncovered

PITTSBURGH, May 17, 2022 – Unlike other infectious diseases that affect the lungs, the immune response to fight tuberculosis (TB) infections develops…

Published

on

PITTSBURGH, May 17, 2022 – Unlike other infectious diseases that affect the lungs, the immune response to fight tuberculosis (TB) infections develops at least twice as slowly. Until recently, the dynamic interplay between bacteria and the host’s immune system remained unclear, hampering the development of effective therapies against the disease, which kills more people worldwide than HIV/AIDS and is second only to COVID-19.

Credit: Joshua Franzos

PITTSBURGH, May 17, 2022 – Unlike other infectious diseases that affect the lungs, the immune response to fight tuberculosis (TB) infections develops at least twice as slowly. Until recently, the dynamic interplay between bacteria and the host’s immune system remained unclear, hampering the development of effective therapies against the disease, which kills more people worldwide than HIV/AIDS and is second only to COVID-19.

In a paper published in Cell Reports today, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine immunologists discovered that adaptive immune response against Mycobacterium tuberculosis—pathogenic bacteria that cause TB—matures over time. The first subset of infection-fighting T lymphocytes does not become fully active until three months after the infection, and the emergence of a second subset of T cells at five months post-infection can contribute to bacterial clearance and recovery.

Such delayed adaptive immune response partially explains why TB infections easily take hold in the host’s lungs and suggests that vaccination strategies against TB should be adjusted to prime T cell responses and kick them into gear at the early stages of infection, ensuring that pathogenic bacteria can be eliminated quickly.

“Lung TB infections can start with a single bacterium that divides into hundreds of thousands of bacteria over the course of four to six weeks. Not a lot of bacterial killing happens between then and 10 weeks post-infection,” said senior author JoAnne Flynn, Ph.D., distinguished professor of microbiology and molecular genetics at the University of Pittsburgh. “In our study, we wanted to find out what changes in the lung immune environment over time that allows it to eventually bring TB infection under control.”

While TB is relatively uncommon in the U.S., it remains a major concern in many countries around the world, disproportionately affecting people in developing countries.

TB is a severe respiratory disease caused by bacteria that slowly propagate and expand upon entering the lungs through the airways, causing lung scarring and inflammation, severe cough and chest pain. To wall off the growing bacteria, the body responds by creating cellular barriers called granulomas, organized spheres of cell clusters made up of immune cells that are a tell-tale sign of TB.

And though most people without underlying health conditions can control TB infections and remain asymptomatic without medical assistance, those with weakened immune systems, such as people with HIV/AIDS or those sick with COVID-19, are at high risk of developing complications and succumbing to the disease.

The only widely used vaccine against TB, called the bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine, is administered to newborns within the first few hours of life. However, the BCG vaccine is limited in its effectiveness and does not prevent infections in the lungs.

Flynn’s previous work showed that administering the BCG vaccine intravenously, as opposed to traditional injection under the skin, offers nearly complete protection against TB infections in monkeys. The new study in Cell Reports provides insights into how this vaccine strategy might be working by speeding up the T cell responses in the lungs so they can quickly shut down infection.

By detecting TB granulomas in macaque monkeys’ lungs using a state-of-the-art imaging technique that allows them to scan lungs of live animals in real time and track development of granulomas as the infection progresses, the researchers were able to isolate granulomas at different times post-infection.

After carefully excising the granulomas and quantifying their cellular composition, researchers found that key players in adaptive immunity, CD8+ T cells, become activated by three months after infection and are joined by CD4+ T cells that further support infection clearance at five months post-infection.

The emergence of these activated T cells is inversely correlated with the number of granuloma-contained live bacteria, suggesting that these cells play critical roles in bacterial control.

“Our work highlighted the timing of evolving adaptive immune response and bacterial clearance in TB,” said first author Nicole Grant, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow at Pitt. “Harnessing that knowledge to increase the number of functional T cells in the early days of infection and getting them to respond and contain bacterial growth quicker is key to creating a therapy that can shut down the infection at its onset.”

Additional authors of the paper include Pauline Maiello M.S., Edwin Klein, D.V.M., Philana Ling Lin, M.D., M.Sc., H. Jacob Borish, Ph.D., Jaime Tomko, L. James Frye, Alexander White, Ph.D., and Joshua Mattila, Ph.D., all at Pitt; and Denise Kirschner, Ph.D., of the University of Michigan.

This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health (grants NIH 5T32AI1065380-13 and NIH AI123093).

#  #  #

About the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

The University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences include the schools of Medicine, Nursing, Dental Medicine, Pharmacy, Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, and Public Health. The schools serve as the academic partner to UPMC. Together, their combined mission is to train tomorrow’s health care specialists and biomedical scientists, engage in groundbreaking research that will advance understanding of the causes and treatments of disease, and participate in the delivery of outstanding patient care. Pitt has ranked among the top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health since 1998. For additional information about Pitt Health Sciences, please visit www.health.pitt.edu.


Read More

Continue Reading

Economics

Expert on Bath & Body Works: ‘an easy double the next three years’

Bath & Body Works Inc (NYSE: BBWI) might have been painful for the shareholders this year, but the road ahead will likely be a rewarding one, says…

Published

on

Bath & Body Works Inc (NYSE: BBWI) might have been painful for the shareholders this year, but the road ahead will likely be a rewarding one, says the Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager at Westwood Group.

BBWI separated from Victoria’s Secret

The retail chain separated from Victoria’s Secret in 2021, which, as per Lauren Hill, clears the way for a 100% increase in the stock price in the coming years. On CNBC’s “Closing Bell: Overtime”, she said:

[Bath & Body Works] has really strong pricing power. They have 85% of their supply chain in the United States and with the Victoria’s Secret brand now gone, I think it’s a wonderful buy; an easy double the next three years.

Last month, the Columbus-headquartered company reported results for its fiscal first quarter that topped Wall Street expectations.

Bath & Body Works is a reopening play

The stock currently trades at a PE multiple of 6.64. Hill is convinced Bath & Body works is a reopening name and will perform so much better as the world continues to pull out of the pandemic. She noted:

Customers have missed buying their scented products in store and as their social occasion calendars fill up, they are getting back out there and buying more gifts, including Bath & Body Works products.

Hill also dubbed BBWI a great pick amidst the ongoing inflationary pressures because of its reasonably priced products. Shares are down more than 50% versus the start of 2022.

The post Expert on Bath & Body Works: ‘an easy double the next three years’ appeared first on Invezz.

Read More

Continue Reading

Economics

Majority Of C-Suite Execs Thinking Of Quitting, 40% Overwhelmed At Work: Deloitte Survey

Majority Of C-Suite Execs Thinking Of Quitting, 40% Overwhelmed At Work: Deloitte Survey

Authored by Naveen Anthrapully via The Epoch Times,

A…

Published

on

Majority Of C-Suite Execs Thinking Of Quitting, 40% Overwhelmed At Work: Deloitte Survey

Authored by Naveen Anthrapully via The Epoch Times,

A majority of C-suite executives are considering leaving their jobs, according to a Deloitte survey of 2,100 employees and C-level executives from the United States, Canada, the UK, and Australia.

Almost 70 percent of executives admitted that they are seriously thinking of quitting their jobs for a better opportunity that supports their well-being, according to the survey report published on June 22. Over three-quarters of executives said that the COVID-19 pandemic had negatively affected their well-being.

Roughly one in three employees and C-suite executives admitted to constantly struggling with poor mental health and fatigue. While 41 percent of executives “always” or “often” felt stressed, 40 percent were overwhelmed, 36 percent were exhausted, 30 percent felt lonely, and 26 percent were depressed.

“Most employees (83 percent) and executives (74 percent) say they’re facing obstacles when it comes to achieving their well-being goals—and these are largely tied to their job,” the report says. “In fact, the top two hurdles that people cited were a heavy workload or stressful job (30 percent), and not having enough time because of long work hours (27 percent).”

While 70 percent of C-suite execs admitted to considering quitting, this number was at only 57 percent among other employees. The report speculated that a reason for such a wide gap might be the fact that top-level executives are often in a “stronger financial position,” due to which they can afford to seek new career opportunities.

Interestingly, while only 56 percent of employees think their company executives care about their well-being, a much higher 91 percent of C-suite administrators were of the opinion that their employees believe their leaders took care of them. The report called this a “notable gap.”

Resignation Rates

The Deloitte report comes amid a debate about resignation rates in the U.S. workforce. Over 4.4 million Americans quit their jobs in April, with job openings hitting 11.9 million, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. In the period from January 2021 to February 2022, almost 57 million Americans left their jobs.

Though some are terming it the “Great Resignation,” giving it a negative connotation, the implication is not entirely true since most of those who quit jobs did so for other opportunities. In the same 14 months, almost 89 million people were hired. There are almost two jobs open for every unemployed person in the United States, according to MarketWatch.

In an Economic Letter from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco published in April, economics professor Bart Hobijn points out that high waves of resignations were common during rapid economic recoveries in the postwar period prior to 2000.

“The quits waves in manufacturing in 1948, 1951, 1953, 1966, 1969, and 1973 are of the same order of magnitude as the current wave,” he wrote. “All of these waves coincide with periods when payroll employment grew very fast, both in the manufacturing sector and the total nonfarm sector.”

Tyler Durden Sat, 06/25/2022 - 20:30

Read More

Continue Reading

Spread & Containment

Optimism Slowly Returns To The Tourism Sector

Optimism Slowly Returns To The Tourism Sector

Coming off the worst year in tourism history, 2021 wasn’t much of an improvement, as travel…

Published

on

Optimism Slowly Returns To The Tourism Sector

Coming off the worst year in tourism history, 2021 wasn't much of an improvement, as travel remained subdued in the face of the persistent threat posed by Covid-19.

According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), export revenues from tourism (including passenger transport receipts) remained more than $1 trillion below pre-pandemic levels in 2021, marking the second trillion-dollar loss for the tourism industry in as many years.

As Statista's Felix Richter details below, while the brief rebound in the summer months of 2020 had fueled hopes of a quick recovery for the tourism sector, those hopes were dashed with each subsequent wave of the pandemic.

And despite a record-breaking global vaccine rollout, travel experts struggled to stay optimistic in 2021, as governments kept many restrictions in place in their effort to curb the spread of new, potentially more dangerous variants of the coronavirus.

Halfway through 2022, optimism has returned to the industry, however, as travel demand is ticking up in many regions.

You will find more infographics at Statista

According to UNWTO's latest Tourism Barometer, industry experts are now considerably more confident than they were at the beginning of the year, with 48 percent of expert panel participants expecting a full recovery of the tourism sector in 2023, up from just 32 percent in January. 44 percent of surveyed industry insiders still think it'll take until 2024 or longer for tourism to return to pre-pandemic levels, another notable improvement from 64 percent in January.

Tyler Durden Sat, 06/25/2022 - 21:00

Read More

Continue Reading

Trending