[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 8-Oct-2012
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Contact: Jillian Hurst
press_releases@the-jci.org
Journal of Clinical Investigation

Sinusitis: Leaving a bad taste in your mouth

The immune system protects the upper respiratory tract from bacterial infections, but the cues that alert the immune system to the presence of bacteria are not known. In this issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, researchers led by Noam Cohen at the University of Pennsylvania demonstrated that the bitter taste receptor T2R38 regulates the immune defense of the human upper airway. Cohen and colleagues found that T2R38 was expressed in the cells that line the upper respiratory tract and could be activated by molecules secreted by Pseudomonas aeruginosa and other bacteria. Additionally, they found that common polymorphisms in the T2R38 gene were correlated with the incidence of bacterial sinus infections. These results demonstrate that genetic variation contributes to individual differences in susceptibility to respiratory infection. In a companion piece, Alice Prince of Columbia University discusses the role of bitter taste receptors in immune defense.

TITLE:

T2R38 taste receptor polymorphisms underlie susceptibility to upper respiratory infection

AUTHOR CONTACT:

Noam Cohen

Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Phone: 215-823-5800 ext 3892; Fax: 215-349-5977; E-mail: cohenn@uphs.upenn.edu

View this article at: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/64240?key=8713f7c1bd015e43f32d

ACCOMPANYING COMMENTARY

TITLE:

The bitter tast of infection

AUTHOR CONTACT:

Alice S. Prince

Columbia University, New York, NY, USA

Phone: 212/305-4193; Fax: 212-305-2284; E-mail: asp7@columbia.edu

View this article at: http://www.jci.org/articles/view/66182?key=3da926f3262c7c8e0664

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