New insights into the way the brain operates are opening up a new therapeutic target to control fever as well as many of its symptoms like fatigue and loss of appetite. Researchers at Harvard Medical School's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston have found the precise cells in the brain that spur a rise in body temperature in reaction to inflammation. Once fever occurs, the body releases prostaglandins which bind to EP3 receptors in the hypothalamus region of the brain. By deleting the gene for the receptors, which the team accomplished in mice, they prevented the development of fever. They believe new drugs could be used to knock out specific symptoms, such as achiness or loss of appetite or just feeling crummy. In diseases like Crohn's or arthritis, the fever itself could be blocked.
- see the releaseÂ on the research
- here's the reportÂ from The New York Times