Researchers find human body produces ozone

In what is a first for biology, a team of investigators is reporting that the human body makes ozone. The team has been slowly gathering evidence over the last few years that the human body produces the reactive gas — most famous as the ultraviolet ray-absorbing component of the ozone layer — as part of a mechanism to protect it from bacteria and fungi. “Ozone was a big surprise,” says researcher Bernard Babior. “But it seems that biological systems manufacture ozone, and that ozone has an effect on those biological systems.”

Mild Injury May Render Brain Cells Vulnerable to Immune Attack

A seemingly mild “insult” to the brain could sensitize neurons to attack by immune system proteins that are otherwise protective, researchers have found. The finding could explain why sufferers of Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases significantly worsen following such insults. The scientists believe that drugs to selectively inhibit the immune proteins could reduce the rate of neural damage in a wide range of neurodegenerative diseases. Such drugs could also protect other organs against damage from autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, in which the immune system attacks body tissues.