Inflammation - expression of an organism's immune response

An important part of the bodies defense against harmful stimuli is inflammation. Here we want to present a more in-depth look at: What is meant by inflammation, how does it manifest and which role do cytokines play in this context?


An inflammation is a local and systemic response of a biological system, triggered by an internal or external stimulus (e.g., infection, injury) that threatens physiological processes. It is a defense mechanism, aiming for localization and elimination of the damaging stimulus, hence creating preconditions for repair processes, in other words "healing". Inflammation is thus an expression of the immune response of an organism, which expresses itself with typical cardinal signs such as redness, swelling, heat, pain, and functional restriction. Vasodilation is causing the redness and arising heat in the damaged tissue by increasing blood flow in the affected area. Fluid, proteins, and leukocytes (white blood cells) move from the circulatory system to the ‘place of action’ where mainly the cumulated fluid outside the blood vessels cause swelling. Finally, pain is caused by chemical mediators of inflammation such as bradykinin, serotonin, and prostaglandins or with swollen tissue pressing against sensitive nerve endings