Fatty Foam Deep inside a rabbit’s lung, something bad is…

Fatty Foam

Deep inside a rabbit’s lung, something bad is happening. The red region is caseum – a cheese-like collection of dead and dying cells caused by infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria, which cause the serious lung disease tuberculosis. Also packed into the caseum are fat-filled immune cells known as foam cells – it’s the fat droplets inside them that are picked up by the red dye used to stain this sample. Foam cells are also found in the fatty artery-blocking plaques in heart and cardiovascular disease, where they’re packed with the ‘bad’ cholesterol that’s linked to heart disease. But the foam cells in tuberculosis-infected lungs appear to be packed with a different type of fat altogether, known as triglycerides. The discovery points to completely different biological pathways at work in the two diseases, suggesting that stopping triglyceride manufacture in these foam cells could lead to entirely new ways to treat tuberculosis.

Written by Kat Arney

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HiPOD (4 November 2018): Wrinkle Ridges in West Meridiani…

HiPOD (4 November 2018): Wrinkle Ridges in West Meridiani Planum 

   – With this image, we can compare the topography of these wrinkle ridges to other terrain to see if bedrock has a discernible effect on ridge growth. (274 km above the surface. Black and white is less than 1 km across; enhanced color is  less than 1 km.)

NASA/JPL/University of Arizona