Resource Approach to Treating MS May be Transformed Thanks to Newly Discovered Connection Between Immune-Nerv

J William M Tweedie

Well-Known Member
An exciting new discovery has turned the medical world upside down, and could have important implications for the treatment of multiple sclerosis (MS). It turns out that previously undiscovered vessels exist that connect the nervous system and immune system directly.

The study, titled Structural and functional features of central nervous system lymphatic vessels was published on June 1st in the prestigious journal Nature.

In MS, the body launches a misdirected immune attack on the nervous system. This attack damages myelin, the wrapping that surrounds nerve cells and helps them transmit information. More direct connections between
the immune and nervous systems may help explain how the disease develops.

Led by postdoctoral fellow Antoine Louveau, PhD, scientists at the University of Virginia studied the covering of the brain, called meninges, in mice. They discovered “functional lymphatic vessels” lining a region known as the dural sinuses, which are cerebrospinal fluid-filled compartments found under a type of meninges called the dura mater. They found that the structures were able to transport fluid and immune cells from the cerebrospinal fluid to “deep cervical lymph nodes,” providing a nervous system-immune system link. Cervical lymph nodes are immune system organs found in the neck.

Jonathan Kipnis, PhD, professor in the UVA Department of Neuroscience and director of UVA’s Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG) reacted to the finding: “Instead of asking, ‘How do we study the immune response of the brain?’ ‘Why do multiple sclerosis patients have the immune attacks?’ now we can approach this mechanistically. Because the brain is like every other tissue connected to the peripheral immune system through meningeal lymphatic vessels. It changes entirely the way we perceive the neuro-immune interaction. We always perceived it before as something esoteric that can’t be studied. But now we can ask mechanistic questions.”

“We believe that for every neurological disease that has an immune component to it, these vessels may play a major role,” Kipnis further noted. “Hard to imagine that these vessels would not be involved in a [neurological] disease with an immune component.”

If this newly discovered system can be used for drug delivery, or further studied to gain understanding of how MS develops, it could mean great news for people suffering from MS in the future.

In the article the researchers note, “The discovery of the central nervous system lymphatic system may call for a reassessment of basic assumptions in neuroimmunology and sheds new light on the etiology [cause] of neuroinflammatory and neurodegenerative diseases associated with immune system dysfunction.”

The finding has prompted a revision of biological and medical textbooks to make room for the newly discovered system. Researchers hope that the discovery will spur on a wide range of research projects, including those associated with multiple sclerosis.

MS News Today
 
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Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
I love things that revise textbooks. Looking for the major revision on ME/CFS! (Except that I guess it is actually IN textbooks at this point :cool:)..

I'm glad you brought this out

"Because the brain is like every other tissue connected to the peripheral immune system through meningeal lymphatic vessels. It changes entirely the way we perceive the neuro-immune interaction. We always perceived it before as something esoteric that can’t be studied. But now we can ask mechanistic questions.”
Because I think this is the key finding....now they can approach neuro-immune disorders in a new way...

Thanks!
 

J William M Tweedie

Well-Known Member
I'll keep posting as I come across articles and tid-bits of interest. Forgive any duplication of postings already on the site and delete if so.

Progress is being made...of course not fast enough for us who suffer with this/these conditions on a daily basis. As much as attention on a variety of fronts has increased over the last year, I still wonder how encouraging or discouraging it will be if a breakthrough in treatment does come but will take endless trials and FDA hoops to jump through before it reaches those who need it.
 

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
The good news is that core problem areas are showing up in a variety of diseases. If they make progress in one it may show up in another.
I'll keep posting as I come across articles and tid-bits of interest. Forgive any duplication of postings already on the site and delete if so.

Progress is being made...of course not fast enough for us who suffer with this/these conditions on a daily basis. As much as attention on a variety of fronts has increased over the last year, I still wonder how encouraging or discouraging it will be if a breakthrough in treatment does come but will take endless trials and FDA hoops to jump through before it reaches those who need it.
 

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