New defense against viral lung infections discovered

Researchers have uncovered a previously unknown arm of the immune defense system that protects the lung from lethal viral infections. Respiratory diseases caused by viruses such as influenza A and SARS-CoV-2 cause damage not just through their own actions, but also from collateral damage as the immune system reacts to fight the infection. A timely and proportionate response identifies viruses, […]

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Immune cell implicated in development of lung disease following viral infection

Scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have implicated a type of immune cell in the development of chronic lung disease that sometimes is triggered following a respiratory viral infection. The evidence suggests that activation of this immune cell—a type of guardian cell called a dendritic cell—serves as an early switch that, when activated, sets in motion […]

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Researchers expect viral transmission of COVID-19 may increase as temperatures drop

Last winter, infectious disease specialists hoped the transmission rates of SARS-CoV-2—the virus behind COVID-19—would rapidly decline like the seasonal flu with the coming of warmer months. Unfortunately, this big drop didn’t materialize, or so we thought. Preliminary results from research at Johns Hopkins Medicine suggest that a large component of the pandemic’s initial spread was indeed dependent on temperature. In […]

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