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Immunoparesis in the critically ill 

Immunoparesis in the critically ill
Immunoparesis in the critically ill

Fabienne Venet

and Alain Lepape

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date: 27 January 2022

In parallel with an exaggerated pro-inflammatory response, critically-ill patients develop an immunosuppressive phase, termed immunoparesis/immunoparalysis or immune reprogramming. Innate and adaptive immune responses are affected. In particular, impaired neutrophil recruitment to injury sites and abnormal accumulation in remote sites; monocyte deactivation with preferential anti-inflammatory cytokine production and altered antigen presentation capacity; and a dramatic lymphopenia associated with major induction of apoptosis, functional, and phenotypic alterations have been described. The intensity and duration of this injury-induced immune dysfunction have been associated with an increased risk of death and secondary nosocomial infections. Innovative therapeutic strategies aiming at restoring immunological functions are currently being tested. GM-CSF appears to be an interesting candidate while IFN-γ‎ and IL-7 represent novel future therapeutic approaches. There is thus an urgent need for further clinical trials of such immunoadjuvant therapies that should include large cohorts of critically-ill patients stratified by relevant markers of immune dysfunction.

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