Macrófagos

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Macrophages: The 'defense' Cells That Help Throughout The Body

Source: American Physiological Society

Friday, August 27, 2010
Crucial white blood cells regulate immunity and help heal woundsWestminster, Colo. (August 26, 2010) – The term "macrophage" conjures images of a hungry white blood cell gobbling invading bacteria. However, macrophages do much more than that: Not only do theyact as antimicrobial warriors, they also play critical roles in immune regulation and wound-healing. They can respond to a variety of cellular signals and change their physiology in response to localcues.

David Mosser, Professor of Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics at the University of Maryland's College of Chemical and Life Sciences, will discuss the three primary duties of macrophages at the2010 American Physiological Society conference, Inflammation, Immunity, and Cardiovascular Disease, in Westminster Colorado, August 25-28. The full conference program can be found athttp://the-aps.org/meetings/aps/inflammation/.

"There has been a huge outpouring of research about host defense that has overshadowed the many diverse activities that these cells do all the time," said Dr. Mosser."We'd like to dispel the narrow notion that most people have that macrophages' only role is defense, and expand it to include their role in homeostasis."

Monocyte Differentiation

Macrophagesexist in nearly all tissues and are produced when white blood cells called monocytes leave the blood and differentiate in a tissue-specific manner. The type of macrophage that results from monocytedifferentiation depends on the type(s) of cytokines that these cells encounter. Cytokines are proteins produced by immune cells that can influence cell behavior and affect interactions between cells. Forexample, macrophages that battle microbial invaders arise in response to interferon-γ, a cytokine that is produced during a cellular immune response involving helper T-cells and the factors they...
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