New study discovers aspirin's double effect
A new study has revealed that aspirin has a second effect, as it not only prevents inflammation and pain, but also hastens the end of inflammation.
According to the study, the drug kills cyclooxygenase, thus preventing production of the prostaglandins that cause inflammation and pain and also prompts the enzyme to generate another compound that hastens the end of inflammation, returning the affected cells to homeostatic health.
Edward A. Dennis said that aspirin causes the cyclooxygenase to make a small amount of a related product called 15-HETE and during infection and inflammation, the 15-HETE can be converted by a second enzyme into lipoxin, which is known to help reverse inflammation and cause its resolution - a good thing.
The researchers found that macrophages contain the biochemical tools to not just initiate inflammation, a natural part of the immune response, but also to promote recovery from inflammation by releasing 15-HETE and converting it into lipoxin as the inflammation progresses.
The study was published online in PNAS.
(Posted on 25-08-2014)