Aging Clinical and Experimental Research

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 240–243 | Cite as

A flame burning within

  • Luigi Ferrucci
  • Alessandro Ble
  • Stefania Bandinelli
  • Fulvio Lauretani
  • Kristen Suthers
  • Jack M. Guralnik
Thematic Section: Inflammation and Aging Viewpoint


Inflammation is a human being’s primary defense against threats to homeostasis that are encountered every day. Especially in old age, when regulatory mechanisms responsible for inflammatory responses may be ineffective or damaged, the result can be adverse pathological conditions, and an increased risk of morbidity and mortality. The inflammation response is a plastic network composed of redundant signaling among several different mediators. These mediators have a reciprocal relationship with other biological subsystems, including hormone regulation, the autonomic nervous system, and oxidative/antioxidant balance. Studying this complex architecture requires parallel and multiple research strategies from epidemiological to biochemical level, from observational studies to innovative intervention approaches. Given that the inflammatory response is a critical age-related process, understanding its regulatory action is essential in avoiding hazardous consequences in old age.

Key Words

Aging cytokines homeostasis immunosenescence inflammation morbidity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Internal Publishing Switzerland 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luigi Ferrucci
    • 1
  • Alessandro Ble
    • 1
  • Stefania Bandinelli
    • 2
  • Fulvio Lauretani
    • 2
  • Kristen Suthers
    • 1
  • Jack M. Guralnik
    • 1
  1. 1.Intramural Research Program, Longitudinal Studies Section, Clinical Research Branch National Institute on AgingASTRA Unit — Harbor HospitalBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.Laboratory of Clinical EpidemiologyINRCA Geriatric DepartmentFirenzeItaly

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