Researchers build new model of endometriosis

Scientists have developed a new model of endometriosis that produces lesions similar to those found in people suffering from the condition, according to a new report in The American Journal of Pathology.

The researchers found evidence to suggest that immune cells known as macrophages present in the endometrium survive, creating an inflammatory environment that makes it possible for endometriotic lesions to form.

It is hoped that the new model which has been developed will inform new studies in the future to investigate how immune cells and menstrual tissue affect endometriosis, which could potentially lead to new targets for therapy.

Endometriosis affects around 176 million women around the world, according to The World Endometriosis Society. But so far it has been difficult to make much progress in researching the condition because there has not been an affordable and suitable model.

Dr Erin Greaves, of the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh’s Queen’s Medical Research Institute and lead investigator on the study, said the team was “excited” by their findings.

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