Accumulation of blood-derived immune cells in the brain and spinal cord is a pathological feature of ALS. The early phase of “neuroimmunity” mainly encompass neuroprotective functions. Progressively, a pro-inflammatory immune response also takes place during the pathogenic process. However, little is known about this neuroimmune facet.
Potential mechanisms by which immune cells might contribute to the neurodegenerative process in ALS. Both neuroprotective and neurotoxic functions can be proposed for the involvement of lymphocytes in ALS pathogenesis.
The key question addressed is what is the contribution of the proinflammatory effector part of neuroimmunity in the selective loss of motoneurons? A better understanding of the proinflammatory side of the immune response is crucial to design timely and pertinent therapeutic strategies.
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- Javier Hernandez (Inserm U844, Montpellier)
- Joseph Boucraut (CRN2M, Marseille)
Cédric Raoul & Thierry Vincent