This is Science Today. A new study has found our
bodies have a finely tuned, active process which
controls inflammation. If not kept in check, inflammation
can lead to chronic inflammatory disease, such as
arthritis, asthma and colitis. Holly Strausbaugh,
a researcher at the University of California, San
Francisco, says in this disease state, the very
cells that are helping us get rid of infectious
organisms can actually begin destroying our own
That's kind of the central feature of chronic inflammatory
diseases and surprisingly, with that knowledge,
we know so little about how inflammation is controlled
and people kind of thought before that it was just
sort of a passive process. That once the organism
was gone, then the response kind of went down on
But Strausbaugh found pain nerve fibers have an
active role in controlling inflammation.
Basically what's happening is that inflammation
is controlling itself because pain is part of inflammation.
So, as inflammation builds up and pain increases,
then pain can feedback basically on itself and lessen
the inflammatory response.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.