Sweet taste receptors are primary sentinels in defense against bacterial infections in the upper airway, study finds

Scientists from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania reveal that the release of antimicrobial peptides is partially controlled by bitter taste receptors in the upper airway on a cell previously identified in animals and only recently in humans known as solitary chemosensory cells (SCCs). What's more, the action of the bitter receptors is blocked when sweet taste receptors are stimulated by sugars such as glucose. This study, published online ahead of print in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, suggests that sweet taste receptors expressed on SCCs in the upper
airway sense bacterial overgrowth and, in turn, control the release of AMPs.

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