How targeting killer T cells in the lungs could lead to immunity against respiratory viruses

A significant site of damage during COVID-19 infection is the lungs. Understanding how the lungs’ immune cells are responding to viral infections could help scientists develop a vaccine. Now, a team of researchers has discovered that the cells responsible for long-term immunity in the lungs can be activated more easily than previously thought. The insight could aid in the development of universal vaccines for influenza and the novel coronavirus. Source

COVID-19 mouse model will speed search for drugs, vaccines

Researchers have developed a mouse model of COVID-19 that is expected to speed up the search for drugs and vaccines for the potentially deadly disease. Source

A newly discovered disease may lead to better treatment of cystic fibrosis

Cystic fibrosis is the most frequent severe inherited disorder worldwide. Researchers have now discovered a novel disease that might lead to a better understanding of cystic fibrosis and new treatment options in the future. Source

Reducing severe breathlessness and psychological trauma in COVID-19 ARDS survivors

A new paper examines ventilation and medication strategies that can help avoid psychological trauma for severe COVID-19 survivors treated for acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) with mechanical ventilation. Source

Scientists discover that nicotine promotes spread of lung cancer to the brain

Among people who have the most common type of lung cancer, up to 40% develop metastatic brain tumors, with an average survival time of less than six months. But why non-small-cell lung cancer so often spreads to the brain has been poorly understood. Source

Respiratory virus builds ‘doorbell’ to trick its way into cells

New research from microbiologists has shed light on how the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) — one of the most common viral infections — breaks into our cells to cause infection. Researchers discovered that RSV tricks cells into letting it in by essentially ringing a doorbell that calls its receptor to the virus waiting at the door. Source

Osteoporosis treatment may also protect against pneumonia

A recent study found that nitrogen-containing bisphosphonates (N-BPs) such as alendronate, which are widely used to treat postmenopausal osteoporosis, are linked with lower risks of pneumonia and of dying from pneumonia. Source

Immune cells multiply and diversify in mouse lungs at birth

An explosion in the number and types of immune cells in the lungs of newborn mice likely helps them adapt to breathing and protects them from infection, says a new study. Source

Researchers map SARS-CoV-2 infection in cells of nasal cavity, bronchia, lungs

Researchers have characterized the specific ways in which SARS-CoV-2 infects the nasal cavity to a great degree — replicating specific cell types — and infects and replicates progressively less well in cells lower down the respiratory tract. The findings suggest the virus tends to become firmly established first in the nasal cavity, but in some cases the virus is aspirated into the lungs, where it may cause more serious disease, including potentially fatal pneumonia. Source

Mouse model mimics SARS-CoV-2 infection in humans

A mouse model of infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) reproduces features observed in human patients, researchers report. Source