This team focused on the type of immune cell; a white blood cell called the macrophage. And macrophage comes from Greek term, big eater, “macro,” big “phage” eater. And really, they’re kind of the garbage collectors, or they eat up different things, actually I have a picture here of one eating some bacteria.
And so, they’ll eat bacteria cells as they’re dying off, and a variety of other things, they kind of clean up the place. And then, depending on where in the body and what the role is, they’ll actually release different substances that help, so in the case if there’s not enough oxygen and a tissue is trying to heal it will stimulate new blood vessel growth. So, they can really be good and helpful in the body. But it turns out that the local environment, the signals can change the behavior of these macrophages. And it turns out that they’re actually drawn into the endometriosis lesions, so if you look in the endometriosis lesions themselves they are packed full of these macrophages.
And It turns out, they’re kind of macrophages gone bad. Because it turns out that what they’ve discovered is that under the influence of endometriosis the macrophages are then producing what’s called insulin like growth factor 1 or IGF-1. And what that does is stimulate the nerve cells to grow and culture and actually become more sensitive. So it’s a way of creating oversensitivity, kind of like a sunburn inside. And so, this is a great understanding and again, macrophages, if you don’t remember the word, you’ve got “MGB” macrophages gone bad. So, you know, they can be good, but these are kind of turned into juvenile delinquents, and they’re raising havoc in the pelvis.
But part of the good news is that this information allows us a new venue of study, to better understand and hopefully provide better treatment. So, both pain relief and maybe even as a way to tag the endo so we can find it and get rid of it one way or another.
So for you, geekoids out there, the title of the article:
So, let me know what you think. I know this is getting a little bit more technical, but I’ve always been of the belief that women with endo are very educated, very smart, and very capable. So just trying to pass this information on to you and I think it’s a great study. All right. Take care.