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The milieu and array of inflammatory cells and inflammatory mediators are crucially involved in the genesis, persistence and severity of pain following trauma, infection or nerve injury [1]. The mechanisms and pathways mediating pain and nociception (hyperalgesia) are transcriptionally regulated. The transcriptional mediator nuclear factor (NF)-κB plays a major role in regulating inflammatory responses, ostensibly via the control of gene expression/suppression. An association has recently emerged to establish a possible link between NF-kB and pain/nociception, purportedly through the regulation of the inflammatory loop and the secretion (biosynthesis) of pro-inflammatory mediators.

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Mammals, that probably represent the most sophisticated metazoans, show an highly complex pattern of interactions between the immune and the neuroendocrine systems (Weigent and Blalock, 1987, 1995). However, in an evolutionary perspective, the roots of these interactions must be traced back to the defense mechanisms which are also present in simpler (and older) forms of

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Recent findings suggest that the amino acid glutamine reduces Helicobacter pylori-associated pathology in mice and may therefore have similar effects in humans with gastric ulcers caused by H. pylori.

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An imbalance in bone formation relative to bone resorption results in the net bone loss that occurs in osteoporosis and inflammatory bone diseases. Although it is well known how bone resorption is stimulated, the molecular mechanisms that mediate impaired bone formation are poorly understood.

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Comment: An herb recently found to kill pancreatic cancer cells also appears to inhibit development of pancreatic cancer as a result of its anti-inflammatory properties, according to researchers from the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson. The data were presented at the AACR 100th Annual Meeting 2009 in Denver.

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Regular consumption of fermented foods containing lactic acid bacteria, such as yoghurt has been found to have a beneficial effect on immune function. In human studies, yoghurt intake has been shown to stimulate the response of systemic natural killer cells when presented with their targets and enhance phagocytic activity of monocytes. In other studies, the stimulation of immune function by probiotic bacteria and classical yoghurt starter cultures has been demonstrated.

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The swine flu outbreak that began in Mexico and continues to spread around the globe may be particularly dangerous for young, otherwise healthy adults because it contains genetic components of the H5N1 avian influenza virus, which can induce a “cytokine storm,” in which a patient’s hyper-activated immune system causes potentially fatal damage to the lungs. Research studies and review articles exploring the regulation of cytokine responses in the lung and how infection-related dysregulation can cause a cytokine storm have been published in Viral Immunology, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert Inc.

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Vitamin D insufficiency is common in the United States; the elderly and African-Americans are at particularly high risk of deficiency. This review, written for a broad scientific readership, presents a critical overview of scientific evidence relevant to a possible causal relationship between vitamin D deficiency and adverse cognitive or behavioural effects. Topics discussed are 1)

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As many as one-third of mutations in a gene result in the corresponding enzyme having an increased Michaelis constant, or Km, (decreased binding affinity) for a coenzyme, resulting in a lower rate of reaction. About 50 human genetic dis-eases due to defective enzymes can be remedied or ameliorated by the administration of high doses of the vitamin component of the corresponding coenzyme, which at least partially restores enzymatic activity.

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Close, tightly orchestrated interactions between the intestinal epithelium and the mucosa-associated immune system are critical for normal intestinal absorptive and immunological functions. Recent data indicate that commensal intestinal microbiota represents a major modulator of intestinal homeostasis. This review analyses the process of intestinal colonisation and the interaction of microbiota with the intestinal epithelium and mucosal

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