Severe sepsis is an important complication of infections and one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality. For the countries of the European Union it is estimated that approximately 600,000 cases and more than 150,000 deaths occur from sepsis per year. Currently, no approved treatment options are available for the therapy of septic shock in humans.
This research proposal intends to investigate the acute inflammatory response during experimental sepsis in rodents. Our preliminary data indicate an essential role of the novel ‘mitochondrial anti-viral signaling protein’ (MAVS) during sepsis. Mice with genetic deficiency of MAVS appear to be protected against sepsis. We seek to study, how the effects of MAVS are related to regulation of cytokines, innate and adaptive immune cells, apoptosis, abnormalities in blood coagulation and appearance of cytotoxic factors in the context of experimental sepsis.
Such studies will be useful to identify novel molecular mechanisms during sepsis which could ultimately be utilized for the development of effective treatment strategies for sepsis.
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