When more could be industry-driven: the case of the extracorporeal treatment of sepsis

  • Miet SchetzEmail author
  • Thomas Bein
Less is More in ICU

The actual and complex situation

Sepsis, defined as life-threatening organ dysfunction caused by a dysregulated host response to infection, continues to have a distressingly high morbidity and mortality. This is especially the case in septic shock, a subset of sepsis with profound circulatory, cellular, and metabolic abnormalities [1]. Pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) and damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) and the resultant production of inflammatory cytokines play an important role in the pathogenesis. Currently, no drugs are approved for the treatment of sepsis, because none of the candidate modulators of the sepsis immune response could show a beneficial effect on patient outcomes in large randomized controlled trials, illustrating the urgent need for new treatment approaches.

The idea of extracorporeal removal of evil substances (blood “purification”), resulting in restoration of the immune balance, has already been raised in the 1980s and rapidly found...


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflicts of interest

MS and TB declare having no conflict of interest related to this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Clinical Department and Laboratory of Intensive Care MedicineKU Leuven UniversityLouvainBelgium
  2. 2.Department of AnesthesiaRegensburg University HospitalRegensburgGermany

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