Immune molecules control brain communication
Faculty member Lisa Boulanger https://www-dept-edit.princeton.edu/neuroscience/people/display_person.xml?netid=960483227&display=All and her lab have shown that specific immune proteins unexpectedly regulate communication between individual neurons in the mammalian brain. By examining mice genetically deficient for proteins of the major histocompatibility complex class I (MHCI), the scientists found that these immune proteins act as a brake on synaptic transmission mediated by the NMDA-type glutamate receptor. These findings reveal a novel form of molecular crosstalk whereby immune signaling could influence brain development and learning and memory, and may regulate neurotoxicity following brain injury and in some neurological disorders. Their results are published December 6th in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Please see the following links:
Supporting Information: http://www.pnas.org/content/suppl/2010/12/02/0914064107.DCSupplemental/pnas.200914064SI.pdf
Boulanger Lab website: