September 11, 2017 – Inflammation Benefit


Anchor lead: What can inflammation in the nose teach us about the body repairing itself? Elizabeth Tracey reports

You’re able to smell things because of the work of your olfactory system. Now research by Andrew Lane, an otolaryngologist at Johns Hopkins, shows that for patients with chronic sinusitis, inflammation on overdrive compromises this system.

Lane: The greater problem in patients at least is loss of sense of smell due to inflammation as in chronic sinusitis for example. It’s clear that chronic inflammation is bad for the olfactory system. This paper is about showing how critical inflammation is, at least in the early stages, to beginning the repair process. :19

Lane was surprised that inflammation actually plays a beneficial role in early repair of tissues that allow us to smell.

Lane: In order to understand what’s wrong you have to understand what’s normal. In a way that’s what this study is about is highlighting that inflammation has a normal role and actually a necessary role, in repair.   :10

Lane says the question now is how to regulate inflammation to preserve the good but mitigate the bad. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.