Researchers identify how infections lead to thrombosis during sepsis

Thrombosis is a common, life-threatening consequence of systemic infection; however, the underlying factors that drive infection-associated thrombi are poorly understood, according to research from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom.

Now, for the first time ever, researchers have identified how salmonella infections that have spread to the blood and organs during sepsis can cause life-threatening thrombosis, or blood clotting.

According to their study, systemic infections trigger inflammation, which can lead to thrombosis. They also discovered that the maintenance of the sustained threat from thrombosis is independent of the continued presence of infection. Instead, the sustained threat from thrombosis parallels the regulation of inflammation within a person's body.

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The research team believes their discovery of the pathway between infections and thrombosis will lead to new opportunities for therapies that can control the consequences of infection-driven thrombosis, without increasing the risk of life-threatening side effects such as bleeding.

"This study…has identified a previously unknown pathway linking the activation of the immune system which is caused by a bacterial infection, with thrombosis," said Subreena Simrick, PhD, research adviser at the British Heart Foundation, which funded part of the research. "This insight into novel mechanisms involved in thrombosis could help develop new approaches to regulate blood clotting in sepsis."

To access the full study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, click here.



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