Inflammatory conditions are a common occurrence among the adult population throughout the country. Mastitis is one such inflammatory condition normally affecting lactating mammals. Mastitis is often caused by bacteria or viruses passing into the breast tissue. Staph is a fairly common bacteria known to lead to this problem. Studies have been performed to determine whether specific compounds could potentially act to decrease the inflammation associated with this condition when it results from a staph infection. The following information will discuss mastitis in more detail. It will also cover the effects of selenium on staph-positive cases of mastitis in mice, which is the topic of the included research study.
What is Mastitis?
Mastitis is an infection that occurs within the breast tissue of mammals. It generally occurs in those that are still producing milk due to recent gestation and subsequent nursing. Mastitis can occur in both humans and animals. It is often caused by an infection resulting from the transmission of a variety of viruses or bacteria to the breast tissue, with Staphylococcus aureus remaining a common culprit. Mastitis often results in visible redness, swelling, discomfort, and pain within the affected breast tissue. Recent studies have been performed to determine the effects of selenium on the inflammatory processes that accompany a staph infection resulting in the development of mastitis.
What is Selenium?
Selenium is one of many essential micronutrients required by the body for optimal health and well-being. Selenium has been known to have powerful effects on the cardiovascular system, maintenance of a strong immune system, and cancer prevention. Selenium does not seem to have much of an effect on the initial development of inflammatory processes within the body, but it was suspected of having positive effects on the progression of inflammation once it began. Researchers decided to put this theory to the test and determine the anti-inflammatory effects of selenium on mice with staph-induced mastitis. The details of this study and the results it yielded will be further expounded upon below.
How Selenium Works to Decrease Inflammation
The first action selenium seems to take is to increase cell survival in the breast tissue of mice infected with staph. This suggests that treatment with specific levels of selenium supplementation may act to effectively increase epithelial cell survival rates in mice suffering from mastitis brought about as a result of staph infection.
Secondly, the addition of treatment levels of selenium into mice affected by mastitis results in definitive histopathological changes within the mice models affected by this condition. The breast tissue of uninfected mice showed the normal morphology of the cells in that area. The breast tissue of infected mice demonstrated a variety of disease-related processes including infiltration of inflammatory cells, shedding of epithelial cells, necrosis of breast tissue, and a disorganized structure of the breast cells. Check Oncotarget at scimagojr.com
Thirdly, researchers noticed a lowered activity level of the neutrophils in the affected area as well. Neutrophils are white blood cells that are sent to a specific area of the body to effectively help get rid of infectious processes. In the process of this study, selenium reduced the activity level of the neutrophils that infiltrated the area of the infected breast tissue.
Results of Study Involving Mice with Mastitis
The particular study in question analyzed the selenium levels in the breast tissue of six groups of mice. The presence of a staph infection did not alter the selenium levels in the breast tissue being referenced. The selenium levels were lowest in the control group of mice. The selenium levels were highest in the mice suffering from mastitis that were also positive for a staph infection.
TLR2 and TLR6 are proteins present in mammals. These proteins influence and play a vital role in the functioning of the body’s inflammatory response that deals with infection and disease processes. Selenium seems to actively decrease the active levels of TLR2 and TLR6. On an additional level, selenium acts to decrease NF-κB and MAPK signaling in the breast tissue of staph infected mastitis-positive mice. Watch this video on Youtube
Final Conclusion of Mice Studies
Multiple studies have previously indicated that selenium decreases inflammatory cytokines in the body, therefore acting as an anti-inflammatory and helping to regulate the immune reaction in the body. The specific details of this study and its outcomes demonstrated that selenium inhibited the inflammatory response in mice who had mastitis resulting from a staph infection, but the level of which this occurred was dependant on the dose in question.
A staph infection affecting the breast tissue results in substantial tissue damage, infiltration of inflammatory cells, and necrosis of the affected tissue. Treatment with selenium decreased the degree of pathology seen in the tissues examined, depending on the dose given. The researchers concluded that selenium decreases the inflammatory response that occurs as a result of a mastitis infection. Therefore, selenium could possibly be used as a more natural manner in which to effectively treat and prevent cases of mastitis in human subjects.
Oncotarget is a bio-medical journal that broaches a wide variety of oncology-related topics in depth. Published twice weekly, this journal discusses important scientific studies that address real health concerns affecting millions of people around the globe.
Oncotarget was initially established in 2010 and is published by Impact Journals. Oncotarget is indexed by well-known names such as Pubmed and Science Citation Index Expanded. Today, the journal continues to provide important scientific research for those interested in furthering their knowledge on these crucial topics.