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Articles on Immune system

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In this November 1918 photo, a nurse tends to a patient in the influenza ward of the Walter Reed hospital in Bethesda, Md. AP Photo/Harris & Ewing via Library of Congress

1918 flu pandemic upended long-standing social inequalities – at least for a time, new study finds

During the 1918 flu pandemic, white people died at similar rates to Black Americans, according to a new study – a very different pattern than what occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Insect bites or stings, like the one on this person’s hand, are a manifestation of inflammation. Suthep Wongkhad/EyeEm via Getty Images

What is inflammation? Two immunologists explain how the body responds to everything from stings to vaccination and why it sometimes goes wrong

Inflammation is a complicated and important part of how the immune system responds to threats to the body. But when the inflammatory response goes awry, it can lead to serious problems.
Consuming an ample supply of fresh fruits and vegetables is still a tried and true way of getting vitamins and minerals and achieving lasting health benefits. PeopleImages/iStock via Getty Images Plus

An expert panel has recommended against taking vitamin E or beta carotene supplements for the prevention of cancer and cardiovascular disease – here’s why

Despite the popular belief that vitamin E and beta carotene supplements help prevent heart disease and cancer, the latest research suggests they do not – but the supplements do have potential risks.
Immunosenescence, or immune aging, can lead to less effective responses to vaccines and greater vulnerability to invading pathogens. Kudryavtsev Pavel/iStock via Getty Images Plus

Social stress can speed up immune system aging – new research

While the immune system naturally gets weaker with age, social stressors like trauma and discrimination can hasten immunosenescence.
With mask mandates and vaccine requirements lifting, public health information remains crucial so people can weigh their own COVID-19 risks. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Adapting to life with COVID-19: Lessons our own immune system can teach us about public health information

To help people make informed decisions about ongoing COVID-19 risks, public health messaging needs to adapt as the pandemic evolves, just as immune systems adapt to new viruses and variants.

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