Particles in Mucus


Anchor lead: Measuring how particles move through mucus may help manage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD is a leading cause of death worldwide. Now a new study by Enid Neptune, a lung expert at Johns Hopkins, and colleagues, has shown that measuring how tiny particles known as nanoparticles move through mucus from lungs of people with the disease may help in their treatment.

Neptune: What this may well be is a useful biomarker for airways disease. What ideally you might want to use this motility of nanoparticles to determine which patients are going to have  more frequent exacerbations, and potentially intensify their treatment. Also determine which patients may need to have much more frequent monitoring. The ideal use of this data is to develop therapies that might be able to alter the architecture of mucus.  :31

Neptune notes that the technique may help avoid some of the many hospitalizations people with COPD experience. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.