Oeiras, Portugal — The work developed in collaboration with researchers from France, Germany and South Korea was recently published in the scientific journal PNAS – Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA.
Sepsis is a potentially fatal illness, that derives from a deregulated response of the organism to an infection, leading to organ malfunction. A study recently published in the scientific journal The Lancet, estimated that in 2017 sepsis affected 49 million people and 11 million people worldwide have died. With the aim of expanding knowledge about this disease, Luis Moita’s team at IGC investigated whether the hormone known as GDF15 (growth and differentiation factor 15) could play a role in sepsis. This hormone has the specificity of being widely studied by several laboratories and pharmaceuticals as a treatment for obesity.
“We’ve discovered a critical effect of GDF15 on infection, which is relevant because this hormone increases in many common diseases, like obesity, pulmonary and cardiovascular diseases”, explains Luís Moita.