Skip to Content

Join the 'Immunodeficiency' group to help and get support from people like you.

Immunodeficiency News

New Gene Therapy May Be Cure for 'Bubble Boy' Disease

Posted 10 Dec 2017 by

SATURDAY, Dec. 9, 2017 – Babies born with the immune-system ravaging "bubble boy" disease have had to spend their too-often-short lives in germ-free isolation, lest something as simple as a common cold virus fell them with a fatal infection. But after decades of research, doctors now believe they have created a cure for severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID). Six out of seven infants treated using a newly crafted gene-based therapy already are out of the hospital and leading normal childhoods at home with family, said lead researcher Dr. Ewelina Mamcarz, an assistant member of the faculty in the Bone Marrow Transplant Department at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. "They left the hospital after four to six weeks and we're following these babies on an outpatient basis," Mamcarz said. The last infant is barely six weeks past treatment, and his immune system is ... Read more

Related support groups: Diagnosis and Investigation, Immunodeficiency

Don't Skip Veggies in Winter

Posted 21 Feb 2017 by

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – Just because it's cold outside doesn't mean you can't eat fresh, healthy foods. There are five types of foods you should try to consume during the winter months, according to health experts at the Cleveland Clinic who offer these suggestions: While it can be hard to find local produce during the winter, root vegetables such as beets, carrots and turnips can withstand the cold and are available. Roast carrots to get a dose of beta-carotene, or boil turnips for vitamins A and C. Oatmeal provides nutrients that are essential during winter. It's high in zinc (important for your immune system) and soluble fiber, which is associated with heart health. Instant oatmeal is more convenient but also more expensive. If you're on a budget, choose old-fashioned oats. Soup is another good food choice in winter, but hold the cream, salt and beef. Try soup recipes that call for ... Read more

Related support groups: Influenza, Cold Symptoms, Vitamin D Deficiency, Sore Throat, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation and Deficiency, A-25, Yellow Fever Vaccine, Zostavax, Swine Influenza, Gardasil, Vitamin A, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Rabies Vaccine, Human Diploid Cell, Hepatitis B Adult Vaccine, Varicella Virus Vaccine, Immunodeficiency, Twinrix, Human Papillomavirus Vaccine, FluLaval, Rubella Virus Vaccine

Skimp on Sleep and You Just May Wind Up Sick

Posted 9 Feb 2017 by

THURSDAY, Feb. 9, 2017 – Ever noticed that when you try to "do it all," the one thing you can count on is getting sick? Now, a new study suggests why: if you don't get enough sleep, your immune system seems to suffer. The finding comes from a study of 11 pairs of twin adults. Each pair of twins had significantly different sleeping routines. The researchers found that the twin who regularly slept less also turned out to be the one with the less potent immune system. "This is the first study to show suppressed immune gene expression in chronic sleep deprivation," said study lead author Dr. Nathaniel Watson. He's a professor of neurology at the University of Washington Medicine Sleep Center in Seattle. That, added Watson, could explain why prior research has shown that "if you expose a sleep-deprived person to a rhinovirus they are more likely to get the common cold than a person who has ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Cold Symptoms, Sleep Apnea, Librium, Xanax XR, Sore Throat, Restoril, Oxazepam, Immunosuppression

Immune System Reboots During Sleep

Posted 4 Jan 2017 by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 4, 2017 – Researchers say they've gained new insight into how the immune system restores itself during sleep. Blood samples were taken from 14 healthy young men, average age 25, when they slept through the night and again when they stayed awake all night. The samples were analyzed for levels of T-cells, which are white blood cells that are the foundation of the immune system. When the participants got a full night's sleep, levels of all types of T-cells fell within three hours of falling asleep. But T-cell levels stayed high when the volunteers stayed awake all night. It's not clear where T-cells went when they left the bloodstream during sleep. But, previous research suggests they may accumulate in lymph nodes, according to the authors of the study published recently in the American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology. The rapid ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Immunosuppression, Diagnosis and Investigation, Immunodeficiency

Nearly 3 Percent of U.S. Adults Have Weakened Immunity: Study

Posted 28 Oct 2016 by

FRIDAY, Oct. 28, 2016 – A new study reports that about 3 percent of people surveyed in the United States have a suppressed, or weakened, immune system. The statistics offer insight into the number of Americans who have immunity-suppressing conditions such as AIDS or take drugs that treat autoimmune disorders by weakening the immune system, the researchers said. The researchers believe these numbers are rising because of medical advances allowing immunosuppressed patients to live longer. Dr. Rafael Harpaz of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention led the study. "Tracking immunosuppression over time is particularly important given the hundreds of clinical trials now under way to assess the use of immunosuppressive treatments for prevention or mitigation of common chronic diseases in highly prevalent risk groups," Harpaz and his colleagues wrote. The study authors explained ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection, Autoimmune Disorders, Immunosuppression, Immunodeficiency

Shire Announces FDA Approval of Cuvitru [immune globulin subcutaneous (human)] for Primary Immunodeficiency

Posted 16 Sep 2016 by

Lexington, Mass. – September 14, 2016 – Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPG) announced that the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted approval for Cuvitru [Immune Globulin Subcutaneous (Human), 20% Solution] in adult and pediatric patients two years of age and older. Cuvitru is a treatment for patients with primary immunodeficiency (PI), a group of more than 300 genetic disorders in which part of the body’s immune system is missing or functions improperly; it affects up to six million people worldwide. With the approval of Cuvitru, Shire now has the broadest portfolio of intravenous and subcutaneous immunoglobulin (IG) products, including the only once-a-month subcutaneous treatment option. Cuvitru is the only 20% subcutaneous IG treatment option without proline and with the ability to infuse up to 60 mL (12 grams) per site and 60 mL per hour, per site as tolerat ... Read more

Related support groups: Primary Immunodeficiency Syndrome, Immunodeficiency, Cuvitru, Immune Globulin Subcutaneous

Baby's Immune System Might Hint at Autism Risk

Posted 11 May 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, May 11, 2016 – While the origins of autism remain mysterious, new research points to the infant immune system as a potential contributing factor. A team of Swedish and American researchers said levels of certain protein "markers" in newborns' blood seemed to predict which children would go on to develop an autism spectrum disorder. This is "important evidence that the immune system in early life may be a key determinant of later risk of autism spectrum disorders," wrote the team led by Dr. R. M. Gardner of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm. The researchers examined blood from nearly 900 children who developed some form of autism. The children were born in Sweden between 1998 and 2000. The researchers compared those blood samples to blood from more than 1,100 kids who didn't develop the disorder. While the study can't prove cause-and-effect, babies who went on to develop ... Read more

Related support groups: Autism, Immunosuppression, Asperger Syndrome, Diagnosis and Investigation, Immunodeficiency

Mixing Lab Mice With Pet Store Peers Might Boost Research

Posted 20 Apr 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, April 20, 2016 – Placing pet store mice in the same cages as laboratory mice could help improve mouse-based research into human diseases, a new study suggests. Laboratory mice are used in many areas of medical research, but their immune systems are more similar to the immature immune systems of newborn humans than adult immune systems, according to researchers led by David Masopust at the University of Minnesota. That's because lab mice are kept in abnormally clean environments, the researchers said. When pet store mice were placed in the same cages as lab mice, the immune systems of the lab mice changed to more closely resemble adult human immune systems. Specifically, the lab mice housed with pet store mice had a more than 10,000 times improved immune response to a bacterial infection than typical lab mice, the study found. The findings suggest that exposing lab mice to ... Read more

Related support groups: Diagnosis and Investigation, Immunodeficiency

Gene Therapy May Offer Hope for 'Bubble Boy' Disease

Posted 20 Apr 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, April 20, 2016 – A new gene therapy shows preliminary promise against so-called "Bubble Boy" disease, researchers report. A small, early-stage trial assessed the safety and effectiveness of the gene therapy in five patients with Bubble Boy disease, formally known as severe combined immunodeficiency disease (SCID). Previous bone marrow transplants had failed to correct their immune function. SCID is a severe, inherited disorder that affects males and occurs in 1 in every 50,000 to 100,000 live births. It is caused by a mutation in the IL2RG gene that leaves boys with little or no immune system protection, the researchers said. According to the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, SCID is fatal, often within the first year or two of life, unless infants receive immune-restoring treatments, such as transplants of blood-forming stem cells, gene therapy or ... Read more

Related support groups: Autoimmune Disorders, Immunosuppression, Diagnosis and Investigation, Immunodeficiency

Smog Linked to Organ Rejection, Deaths in Lung Transplant Patients

Posted 29 Sep 2015 by

TUESDAY, Sept. 29, 2015 – Living near busy roads with high levels of air pollution raises lung transplant patients' risk of organ rejection and death, but some antibiotics lower that risk, a new study shows. Researchers examined data gathered from more than 5,700 lung transplant patients in 10 European countries between 1987 and 2013. The analysis revealed that patients who lived in areas where air pollution was above maximum levels recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) were 10 percent more likely to die than those in areas with lower levels of pollution. But this increased risk of death was not seen among patients who took a class of antibiotics called macrolides, which include azithromycin (Zithromax) and clarithromycin (Biaxin), according to the study presented Tuesday at a meeting of the European Respiratory Society in Amsterdam. "Short and long-term exposure to air ... Read more

Related support groups: Azithromycin, Zithromax, Erythromycin, Clarithromycin, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Biaxin, Immunosuppression, Zithromax Z-Pak, MY-E, Z-Pak, Organ Transplant - Rejection Prophylaxis, Organ Transplant, Biaxin XL, Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Organ Transplant - Rejection Reversal, Azithromycin Dose Pack, Respiratory Tract Disease, Pulmonary Impairment, Immunodeficiency, Dificid

Deadly Skin Cancer More Common in Organ Transplant Recipients: Study

Posted 17 Aug 2015 by

MONDAY, Aug. 17, 2015 – People who've received organ transplants may face an increased risk for the deadly skin cancer melanoma, a new study suggests. The researchers said the increased risk may stem from the immune system-suppressing drugs that must be taken to prevent rejection of the new organs. The analysis of data from hundreds of thousands of transplant recipients and melanoma patients in the United States showed that transplant recipients were twice as likely to develop melanoma and three times more likely to die of the disease than people who had not undergone a transplant. The researchers also found that transplant recipients were four times more likely to be diagnosed with melanomas that had already spread to other parts of the body. "We knew that melanoma was more likely in transplant recipients, but we thought it might be a function of intensive screening since they are ... Read more

Related support groups: Skin Cancer, Melanoma, Organ Transplant - Rejection Prophylaxis, Melanoma - Metastatic, Organ Transplant, Immunodeficiency, Rejection Prophylaxis

Gene Therapy Shows Potential for 'Bubble Boy' Disease

Posted 9 Oct 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8, 2014 – A new form of gene therapy may offer a safe and effective way to treat "bubble boy" disease – a severe immune deficiency that is fatal unless treated in infancy. Researchers have long known that gene therapy can cure the disease, known medically as severe combined immunodeficiency, or SCID. Over a decade ago, trials in Europe showed that gene therapy worked – but five of the 20 children treated developed leukemia (a type of cancer) within two to five years, according to background information in the study. In the new trial, reported in the Oct. 9 New England Journal of Medicine, researchers refined the gene therapy approach to hopefully negate the leukemia risk. Eight of nine children who received the therapy are still alive one to three years later, the investigators report. And so far, none has developed leukemia. It's too early to say the therapy carries ... Read more

Related support groups: Immunodeficiency

Early Stem Cell Transplant Vital in 'Bubble Boy' Disease

Posted 30 Jul 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 – Babies born with so-called "bubble boy" disease can often be cured with a stem cell transplant, regardless of the donor – but early treatment is critical, a new study finds. Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), as the condition is medically known, actually refers to a group of rare genetic disorders that all but eliminate the immune system. That leaves children at high risk of severe infections. The term "bubble boy" became popular after a Texas boy with SCID lived in a plastic bubble to ward off infections. The boy, David Vetter, died in 1984 at the age of 12, after an unsuccessful bone marrow transplant – an attempt to give him a functioning immune system. Today, children with SCID have a high chance of survival if they receive an early stem cell transplant, researchers report in the July 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. In the ... Read more

Related support groups: Immunodeficiency

Ask a Question

Further Information

Related Condition Support Groups

Immunosuppression, Primary Immunodeficiency Syndrome, Immunoglobulin Deficiency, Chronic Granulomatous Disease, Adenosine Deaminase Deficiency

Related Drug Support Groups

pegademase bovine, Adagen