Fibromyalgia: a general inflammation

An important step has been made in understanding the mechanisms involved in fibromyalgia, particularly on the inflammatory process.

It has already been suggested that chronic inflammation likely plays a central role in fibromyalgia, says the Swedish team (universities of Uppsala and Linköping). However, previous studies were interested in some molecules characteristic of inflammation, called cytokines. Here, researchers have sought simultaneously  a hundred proteins  associated with the inflammatory process, and this in samples of blood and cerebrospinal fluid (that surrounds the brain and spinal cord). They performed this analysis on patients with fibromyalgia and on those without the disease.

The result  highlights evidence  “strong”  double phenomenon in fibromyalgia: neuro-inflammatory (cerebrospinal fluid) and chronic inflammatory systemic (blood). In other words,  inflammation is widespread . Two cytokines stand out: the fractalkine and interleukin 8 (IL-8). The important point is the comment of specialists: “This is the first time an inflammatory profile also expanded described for fibromyalgia, which seems characterized by objective biochemical alterations” . This means that  “the description of its mechanisms as essentially idiopathic (no known cause) or even psychological should be considered outdated”. They add that the more thorough exploration of the inflammatory process should help identify avenues for the development of  treatments  much better targeted and more effective.

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