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Hydrogen Peroxide Provides Clues to Immunity, Wound Healing, Tumor Biology

Posted Nov 27 2011 9:14am

Hydrogen peroxide isn’t just that bottled colorless liquid in the back of the medicine cabinet that’s used occasionally for cleaning scraped knees and cut fingers.

It’s also a natural chemical in the body that rallies at wound sites, jump-starting immune cells into a series of events.

A burst of hydrogen peroxide causes neutrophils, the immune system’s first responders, to rush to the wound to fight microorganisms, remove damaged tissue and then start the inflammation process.

University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers now have discovered the molecular sensor that detects wound-induced hydrogen peroxide and orchestrates the marshalling of neutrophils and other immune cells, or leukocytes, including those that affect tumors.

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