Immunomodulatory effects of platelets during inflammation and infection

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Unit profile

Platelets are circulating blood cells that primarily participate in blood clotting. The aim of our research is to elucidate the complementary role of platelets during inflammation and the host response to bacterial infection. Bacteria that breach the bloodstream can cause invasive infections, such as sepsis and septic shock. A delicately balanced and intercommunicating immune system exists to combat infection, however in sepsis these host defence systems become pathologically augmented and deregulated. Projects within the group investigate the molecular mechanisms involved in platelet activation in response to bacterial pathogens and inflammatory stimuli, and the subsequent consequences for immune defence systems; leukocytes, endothelial cells and the complement system. The knowledge generated will identify novel targets for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of severe manifestations of infection and inflammation, such as sepsis.


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