The perioperative immune response

O'Dwyer, Michael J., Owen, Helen C. and Torrance, Hew D. T. (2015) The perioperative immune response. Current opinion in critical care, 21 (4) . pp. 336-342. ISSN 1070-5295 [Article] (doi:10.1097/MCC.0000000000000213)

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A host of immune modulators are now available in clinical practice. The perioperative period is characterized by profound alterations in host immunity, which can result in poor outcomes, which include infection, cancer recurrence and organ failure. Manipulation of the perioperative immune response has the potential to improve outcomes. A complete understanding of the mechanisms and clinical consequences of altered immune function in this setting is therefore imperative.


Recent in-vivo data have emerged which further our understanding of the interaction between tissue damage, immune modulation and clinical outcomes by utilizing novel laboratory techniques capable of monitoring single-cell immune signatures. Traditional gene expression assays have continued to demonstrate their utility and have been instrumental in defining the host response to perioperative allogeneic blood transfusion. These mechanistic studies are complemented by large clinical studies describing associations between anaesthetic modalities and immune-related outcomes.


Laboratory techniques are now available that can monitor the perioperative immune response and could be further developed to introduce personalized care pathways. Consideration must also be given to anaesthesia techniques and perioperative treatments that, although not immediately harmful, may be associated with poor outcomes temporally distant from the treatment, secondary to induced immunosuppression.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Natural Sciences
Item ID: 19096
Notes on copyright: Attached full text: This is a non-final version of an article published in final form in - O’Dwyer, M. J., Owen, H. C., & Torrance, H. D. T. (2015). The perioperative immune response. Current Opinion in Critical Care, 21(4), 336–342. doi:10.1097/mcc.0000000000000213. Available at:
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Depositing User: Helen Roberts
Date Deposited: 21 Apr 2016 09:33
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 22:34

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