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INFLAMMATION INFORMATION -Chronic Low Level Inflammation

Inflammation Information

ACUTE inflammation

-   is necessary for survival, and is the immune system's immediate response to infection or injury


Without inflammation, infections (incl. bacterial, viral, fungal and parasitic) would go unchecked and wounds (E.g.trauma, surgery, burns, damage inflicted by a saber tooth tiger!)  would never heal



As part of the innate immune system (I.S.)

(General “Soldiers” -  1st line of defense against invading organisms)


INNATE immunity – initial response nonspecific to antigen (nonself, stimulates immune response) immediately or within several hours after exposure to microbe


      Chemicals released to cause inflammation attract white blood cells called phagocytes (E.g. macrophages and neutrophils) - which engulf foreign particles (E.g. chemicals, particulate matter), bacteria, parasites, dead/dying body cells and debris; being messy “eaters”, macrophages “burp up” fragments of their “meal” that alert other I.S. cells to join the fight and they also produce chemicals to kill microbes;


-      Different methods are employed to kill microbes -  intracellularly, phagocyte oxygen consumption increases in a so-called “respiratory burst”, which produces anti-microbial ROS:  Singlet oxygen, Hydroxyl radical and Hypochlorite; extracellularly, nitric oxide  is used against bacteria; some of these oxidants leak into and damage surrounding tissue, causing more inflammation, especially if the “battle “ goes on for too long;


-      Tumor Necrosis Factor-ɑ (secreted by activated macrophages) is used to destroy  virally infected cells/cancer cells:


-      Pus - is a combination of dead tissue, dead bacteria, and live and dead phagocytes.




Macrophages “Dealing with” a parasite


Macrophage “eating” carbon particles in particulate matter

(The black material is inhaled carbon in sputum induced from a healthy child’s lung)




      The damaged/infected site becomes red, swollen and warm, with possible loss of function - as healing mechanisms are initiated.


      Eventually any damage is repaired  - fibroblasts manufacture the extracellular matrix (ECM) and collagen to repair damaged connective tissue (admittedly sometimes leaving a scar);


      Acute inflammation response is designed to work best in a well-nourished person with a mild to moderate injury /infection over a short period of time – response usually occurs within minutes to hours, and the problem is often fixed in a few days;



As part of the adaptive immune system (I.S.)

(Specialized “Troops” 2nd line of defense and protection against re-infection by same pathogen)


HUMORAL immunity – involves production of antibodies in response to an antigen and is mediated by B-lymphocytes

CELL-MEDIATED immunity - involves production of cytotoxic T-lymphocytes, activated macrophages, activated NK cells, and cytokines in response to an antigen and is mediated by T-lymphocytes


      Macrophages call in the lymphocytes (B-cells and T-cells) - these are mobilized to find the non-self invader (called an antigen);


         T-cells - identify and eliminate antigens.

         B-cells - produce specific antibodies (think of them as flags) to attach to a specific antigen to identify it as a marked target for destruction by cytotoxic T-cells (Natural killer T-cells / NKT). Note, these are distinct from Natural Killer (NK) cells of innate immunity;

         Helper T-cells - signal B-cells to multiply to strengthen attack force;

         Suppressor T-cells - down-regulate other I.S. responses;


For more detailed information:




Inflammation Links




- Can't Live with it, Can't Live without it!           

- Acute Inflammation 

- Chronic Low-Level Inflammation 

 Chronic Low-level Inflammation is a common factor in most health problems


 About inflammation Process

- Inflammation "Players"
- Mechanism of ACUTE inflammatory Phase

- Detailed  inflammation process 


Causes of Chronic Low-level Inflammation


Stress, Toxins, Damaged Fats, Microbes and NOT Enough Antioxidants 


Too Many Inflammatory Fats . NOT Enough ANTI-Inflammatory Fats


Too Much Sugar/HFCS and Other Refined carbohydrates   


 Too Much Meat & Dairy / NOT Enough B-Vitamins


 NOT Enough Alkaline-Forming Foods


Health Problems linked with chronic low-level inflammation



- Short-term Relief and Long-term, Natural Solutions

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