Issue Date: October 4, 2010
Free Heme Promotes Severe Sepsis
Blood’s iron-toting compound, heme, plays a central role in the development of severe sepsis, an extreme systemic inflammatory response to infection, Portuguese and Brazilian researchers report (Sci. Transl. Med. 2010, 2, 51ra71). Miguel P. Soares of the Gulbenkian Institute of Science, in Oeiras, Portugal, and coworkers discovered that free heme released from hemoglobin as a result of an infection promotes tissue damage and severe sepsis. Protoporphyrin IX—heme’s organic framework—doesn’t cause sepsis on its . . .
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