Valerio Chiurchiù studies how to counteract chronic inflammation through these molecules

30 May 2018 - An initial funding of over 400 thousand euros from the Ministry of Education and another of 130 thousand from the Aism/Fism Foundation to carry out studies on resolvins, molecules that regulate inflammatory processes: this is the work of Valerio Chiurchiù, a researcher at theBiochemistry Unit ofUniversità Campus Bio-Medico di Roma and the Santa Lucia Foundation (both laboratories are directed by prof. Mauro Maccarrone). The objective is to slow down the progression of Multiple Sclerosis by restoring or reactivating these Omega3 metabolites, the resolvins, in the immune system, which by repairing tissues damaged by an inflammatory process restore the state of good health of our organism.

For about four years Valerio Chiurchiù, in collaboration with Charles Serhan of Harvard who first discovered them, has been studying resolvins in blood (in 2016 he published an article in the prestigious journal Science Translation Medicine). Although our body has always known these molecules, which provide the immune system with a powerful defense tool implemented to shut down inflammatory processes, resolvins were only discovered a few years ago. They are produced from Omega3 fatty acids contained in large quantities in specific foods such as oily fish, chia and flax seeds, but also in walnuts and broad leaf vegetables. The benefits of Omega3s have been known for over 30 years but their presence in our body, which is unable to produce them independently, derives exclusively from the diet we follow.

So far, the studies carried out in the laboratory by Valerio Chiurchiù on various immune cells responsible for chronic inflammation have demonstrated the effectiveness of the reintroduction of resolvins. The next step, thanks to the funding just won, will be to understand if patients with Multiple Sclerosis show defects in the production of these molecules and if this reintroduction of resolvins will also "work" on the patients' immune cells. In this way it will be possible to verify the possibility of physiologically slowing down the inflammations from which so many chronic diseases originate, finally administering the resolvins directly to the patients. At the same time, the studies will focus on human metabolism, to fully understand the causes of the poor or non-transformation of Omega3 into resolvins. Currently, in a well-functioning organism, to obtain sufficient quantities of resolvins, it is recommended to eat foods with a high Omega3 content at least three times a week.