Immune cell involvement in healthy brain function

Beyond repair, our group was the first to propose found that the immune system supports healthy brain plasticity, with positive effects on adult neurogenesis, and spatial learning and memory [1, 2]. Moreover circulating immune cells were found to also be needed for fighting against mental stress and depression [3]. The role of immune molecules and cells in controlling neurogenesis was further extended by our demonstration of a direct cross-talk between myeloid cells and neural stem cells, and the role of TLR expression by neural stem cells in controlling neurogenesis [4].



[1] Kipnis J, Cohen H, Cardon M, Ziv Y, Schwartz M. T cell deficiency leads to cognitive dysfunction: implications for therapeutic vaccination for schizophrenia and other psychiatric conditions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 2004;101:8180-5.

[2] Ziv Y, Ron N, Butovsky O, Landa G, Sudai E, Greenberg N et al. Immune cells contribute to the maintenance of neurogenesis and spatial learning abilities in adulthood. Nature neuroscience, 2006;9:268-75.

[3]  Lewitus GM, Wilf-Yarkoni A, Ziv Y, Shabat-Simon M, Gersner R, Zangen A et al. Vaccination as a novel approach for treating depressive behavior. Biological psychiatry, 2009;65:283-8.

[4] Rolls A, Shechter R, London A, Ziv Y, Ronen A, Levy R et al. Toll-like receptors modulate adult hippocampal neurogenesis. Nature cell biology, 2007;9:1081-8.