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Can someone explain to me how can one disease like cystic fibrosis affect so many different organs in the body? My friend suffers from it and she has problems with both lungs that causes breathing problems, coughing and mucus and pancreas. How are these two organs connected, so that both can be affect in one disease? Thank you

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Cystic fibrosis is a difficult disease that affects many people and that may lead to early death. This is because no cure has been found and some years ago, people who were born with this disease didn’t manage to live up until teenage. Today, the situation is slightly better but still difficult. What happens in cystic fibrosis? Epithelial cells that line the passageways inside the lungs, liver, pancreas, and digestive and reproductive systems don’t work properly. There is a gene in these people that orders the production of defective form of certain protein called CFTR by epithelial cells. When this CTFR protein is not working properly the epithelial cells can’t control the way chloride passes across cell membranes and problems occur. This leads to imbalance of salt and water used for maintaining a normal thin coating of fluid and mucus inside the organs that are lined by epithelial cells and the mucus turns thick, unmovable and sticky. When mucus in the lungs in sticky and non movable, it tramps all the germs that it usually does but since it can’t be expelled, the germs stay inside the body and cause frequent lung infections. This thick mucus prevents pancreas from delivering enzymes to the intestines to digest foods, so patients don’t absorb certain food properly. This is the way one disease can affect two or more organs.
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