HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Light therapy may combat fungal infections, new evidence suggests

Durham, N.C. A newly discovered mechanism by which an infectious fungus perceives light also plays an important role in its virulence, according to Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators at Duke University Medical Center. The findings suggest that changes in light following fungal invasion of the human body may be an important and previously overlooked cue that sparks infection, the researchers said.

The discovery in the human pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans further suggests that light therapy, in combination with anti-fungal drug treatments, might offer an effective method to combat a variety of fungal infections, particularly those of the skin or nails, said HHMI investigator Joseph Heitman, M.D., James B. Duke professor of molecular genetics and microbiology and medicine at Duke.

Light therapy is now used for medical conditions, such as seasonal affective disorder. The most common method, called bright-light therapy, requires that patients sit near a special light box fitted with high-intensity, full-spectrum or white light bulbs. UV irradiation is also used to repigment skin affected by the autoimmune disorder vitiligo.

The findings also have important implications for understanding early fungal evolution, Heitman and study lead author Alexander Idnurm, Ph.D., reported in a forthcoming issue of Public Library of Science Biology, published online March 15, 2005. The National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund supported the research.

The potentially life-threatening fungus C. neoformans invades the central nervous system to cause disease, most commonly in patients who lack a functioning immune system, such as organ transplant recipients, those with HIV/AIDS, and patients treated with steroids or cancer chemotherapy. The fungus' global importance as a health threat has therefore risen in parallel with the increase in immunosuppressive therapies and the worldwide HIV/AIDS epidemic.
'"/>

Contact: Kendall Morgan
kendall.morgan@duke.edu
919-660-1306
Duke University Medical Center
14-Mar-2005


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Light sticks may lure turtles to fishing lines
2. Light-activated therapy targets DNA components
3. Light-activated compound silences nerves, may one day help epileptics
4. Lighting up life: Cold Spring Harbor Protocols presents tips for creating glowing plants
5. Light-Activated Tissue Regeneration and Therapy -- II
6. Lighting up the heart
7. Light guides flight of migratory birds
8. Light-to-moderate prenatal alcohol exposure can lead to cognitive deficits 10 years later
9. Light activated anticancer drug targeted to DNA using cisplatin like sub-units
10. Light-sensing cells in retina develop before vision
11. Light exercise a tonic to keep the brain young

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/8/2019)... ... January 07, 2019 , ... ... solutions, is proud to welcome Thomas Kennedy as head of sales and business ... for PureWay. , Mr. Kennedy has previously worked for Johnson & Johnson Medical, ...
(Date:1/4/2019)... ... January 02, 2019 , ... Lifecycle Biotechnologies ... the life science tools and service supplier turned 40 in 2018 and for ... catalog features not just part numbers like most catalogs, but rather, insightful information ...
(Date:12/25/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine ... a long-standing computational concept known as “blacklisting,” which is commonly employed as a ... as a filter to single out genetic variations in patient genomes and exomes ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/8/2019)... ... January 08, 2019 , ... The American Society of ... were named by a selection committee made up of industry leaders identified by the ... Development grants are mentored awards created to support ASGCT members designing transformative pilot studies ...
(Date:1/4/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... January 01, 2019 , ... ... first Microbiome Conference at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting January 22-25, 2019 ... conference is invitation-only. , The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting brings together leaders ...
(Date:12/20/2018)... ... ... New Year’s brings reflection and desire to improve for individuals and businesses ... on the horizon, Jim Kasic, president and CEO of Boulder iQ, suggests five resolutions ... Regulation (MDR), digital health, and big data are just a few of the challenges ...
(Date:12/18/2018)... ... December 17, 2018 , ... ABCT , ... biosciences ventures invited to participate in the annual program. Twelve ventures will participate ... and a professional network. All startups receive an entrepreneur coach, access to active ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: