Research suggests that an immune signalling protein called interleukin (IL)-26 is increased among chronic smokers with lung disease and this involvement reveals disease mechanisms of interest for developing more effective therapy for these hard-to-treat patients.
Researchers have developed a new computational way of analyzing X-ray images of lungs, which could herald a breakthrough in the diagnosis and assessment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other lung diseases.
A study with more than 3,300 participants in 12 countries has established a relationship between occupational exposure to biological dusts, gases, fumes and pesticides and COPD. The researchers did a follow-up of the participants 20 years after the first assessment.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD for short, is believed to be the third most common cause of death worldwide. However, because the underlying mechanism is still largely unknown, today's treatments can only slow progression of the disease. Scientists have now reported a previously unknown pathogenic mechanism, which they have already been able to prevent in the laboratory.