Direct Link Immune System And The Brain — Profound Implications For Neurology

 Direct Link Immune System And The Brain – Vessels Found By Antoine Louveau, PhD,
Posted: 01 Jun 2015 09:24 AM PDT
In a stunning discovery that overturns decades of textbook teaching, researchers have determined that the brain is directly connected to the immune system by vessels previously thought not to exist. The discovery could have profound implications for diseases from autism to Alzheimer’s to multiple sclerosis.

“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,” said Jonathan Kipnis, PhD, professor in the UVA Department of Neuroscience and director of UVA’s Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG). “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 said. “Hard to imagine that these vessels would not be involved in a [neurological] disease with an immune component.” …

Missing link found between brain, immune system; major disease implications

University of Virginia Health System. “Missing link found between brain, immune system; major disease implications.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 June 2015. <>.

Antoine Louveau, Igor Smirnov, Timothy J. Keyes, Jacob D. Eccles, Sherin J. Rouhani, J. David Peske, Noel C. Derecki, David Castle, James W. Mandell, Kevin S. Lee, Tajie H. Harris, Jonathan Kipnis. Structural and functional features of central nervous system lymphatic vessels. Nature, 2015; DOI: 10.1038/nature14432





25 comments on “Direct Link Immune System And The Brain — Profound Implications For Neurology

  1. Gator Woman says:

    Thank you for this. It is so very important!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think some old careers may be redeemed and old research taken out of the moth balls. Hooray for young researcher for finding a face saving way of physically identifying the lymph vessels. No wonder there are so many lymph nodes in our necks and heads. Wonder what else sinuses do besides adjust to elevation and depth, influence sense of direction, lubricate nasal passages, drain eyes … help hearing … CONNECT TO TONSIL AND ADENOIDS AND LYMPH???? Minor inflammation and brain fog?? Mumps?? Herpes? Epstein-Barr?? BOOZE?? MENINGITIS?? GENGIVITIS?? Rh and Haplo factors and FUNGI AND SUGARS AND MIDDLE EAR INFECTIONS AND SO ON … ?? We always knew nothing in our bodies is a closed system.

      Well, except for some people’s minds 😀 Maybe that is where the idea that cerebral/spinal fluid is a closed system came from? It matches the (funding committees) way of thinking?? 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Outlier Babe says:

    Good golly! I headed over here to get a gander at the woman who withstood a huge dose of my all-in-a-row lupus pity-ramblings, and just look what I find–this amazing information which I somehow missed in my Science Daily readings–how did THAT happen?! Thank you so much, Bear–for visiting and enduring, and for educating me about this fascinating fluid connection that makes those evil autocidal demons have an even easier access to our inner selves than we had known. Glad their secret is now exposed–soon may they all rot!

    (Yikes! Since I have CNS involvement, and I now know about this, now my disease is also aware the jig is up–like those pod people in the old film. Do we need to worry about this?)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I completely enjoyed the little bit of reading I indulged in, on your blog, at times (probably inappropriately) laughing out loud. And totally sympathetic @ not going to docs. And I feel bad for your poor Mama. Sheesh, probably nobody had any sympathy for her and called he a martyr and hypochondriac behind her back. No wonder you learned to keep quiet. If I am not intruding too much, how old are you now, and how old was she at your birth? So that I can place you both with what was/is currently known/available. You dated your posts as to the time of doc visits, which helpfully places them in context. Thank you. Glad all the secondary (ha!!) problems, like pleurisy, peri-carditis, choking (aspirating) didn’t kill you!! XOXO

      ps Pod people? Which old film?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Outlier Babe says:

        Invasion of the Body Snatchers. I think in that the aliens all share common knowledge.

        I’m 59. Don’t feel too sorry for my poor mama. You haven’t read my “Mommy Hyde” series (my folks were abusive). Thank you for laughing–I’m thrilled–and it was NOT inappropriate–it’s what I wanted.
        My mom would have been about 30 when I was born.

        Eek! Just checked out the Mommy Hyde posts, and it’s entirely italicized–I’m grateful to you, ’cause now I know I have a post somewhere that is missing an ending html command. When I get off work, I’ll have to track that down. Rats.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Mommy Hyde?? Ha! Seems to be (been) a lot of that going around. 😦 And you are able to write sharing info AND inspiring laughter? Wow!! You are amazing.

          I don’t read all of Sci Daily. There is just too much, and at the same time it doesn’t ever say enough … just skims the edges of anything.

          I have a Google thingy that scans the net for certain words, then puts links to the articles in my email. I used to get way more of that than I could keep up with, even filtered, and had to reduce my parameters. There is still a lot of redundant and extraneous info to skim.

          Did you take Colchicine for the peri-carditis? Did it help with other symptoms, too? Was it enough? Were plueresy and peri-carditis the result of Lupus attacks? Or coincidentally timed?

          Liked by 1 person

          • Outlier Babe says:

            Thanks for the “amazing” : )

            I took nothing at the time but the two drugs mentioned–the Plaquenil and Naproxen. There is more to come of the series, though (and colchicine will make an appearance).
            That google alert is handy. Yes, it is impossible to keep up with everything, and my Aspie OCD-ishness kills me. Sci Daily doesn’t say enough, but it has links, and then I get compulsive about those. Yikes.

            What I miss terribly is the mag Science, but ever since it went all snooty years and years ago and priced itself beyond the moon, I can’t get it.

            Liked by 1 person

          • I do get Science, and I humbly confess, I do not read everything.

            Maybe you can convince your nearest library to subscribe?

            Liked by 1 person

          • Outlier Babe says:

            That is a brilliant idea. My nearest library is closed for the next year–but once it reopens, it’s worth looking into.

            Liked by 1 person

          • A year!! Sheesh!! The moon could turn around in a year! Is there a second closest library? Or a college or university?


          • Outlier Babe says:

            Laughing at the moon line.
            I am heading for the county library in the Marina Friday, so will ask ’em there. There’s always uck-la, too–a bit more of a drive, but not bad.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Outlier Babe says:

            Oh: As to whether or not the two p’s were from the lupus: That is an open question which the rest of the series will confuse. (This all will make more sense if you follow the rest of the series. There will be a brief intermission of one or two extremely brief silly posts. Then, right back into it.) The conditions did clear as the other lupus symptoms quelled. Neither ever recurred–that I know of. I did have chest pain and shortness of breath recur, but never to that degree. Never did I again have such a terrific doctor, though one more came close.

            Liked by 1 person

          • I look forward to learning more.


          • Outlier Babe says:

            Thank you. I’m pretty much sick of the story now, myself, with no idea of how I’m going to end it, and it’s almost finished, but finish it I feel compelled to do, despite the plummet in readership it has brought.


          • Doesn’t Lupus have a genetic component? No ending in sight. Yet. End ??? I can see that you might have a quandary. But, it is your own blog. You are not obliged to do anything, and as far as I know there are no time-lines, dead-lines, or contractual publishing obligations.

            As a reader, I may read when, and if there is something available AND I feel like it AND have access.

            As a blogger I have learned that readers have short attention spans. I gave up writing for readers (except sometimes, now and again something like the links in this blog-post… which indicate a change in (funded) research direction, that (I think) folk should be aware of. A earthquakes, tsunami, some space weather … I often go back and delete time sensitive posts, as I may delete this one, in a week or two.

            Available tech and leisure time might have more to do with numbers of readers than the quality of content, at the present moment … just a thought.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Outlier Babe says:

            1. Yes. Often other family members have, if not lupus, other autoimmunities. However, with the latest findings in epigenetics and impact of nasty environment on triggering autoimmunities, who’s to say any more what’s nature and what’s nurture?
            2. I oblige myself. I’m big on procrastination and not finishing when the subject matter touches on emotional turmoil. The blog is my place to face that down. The lupus isn’t the turmoil, but it was…part of my vulnerability in the abusive marriage, and it was used against me during that marriage to keep me in my pumpkin shell, and used against me in the divorce to try to harm me further on my way out the door–to punish me for filing.

            3. Yes, yes, and yes to your comments about many readers. I am lucky that my core readers are magnificent and good friends now.

            4. Un-available leisure time. Yes. Look at me, tonight, doing this instead of my job.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. 1EarthUnited says:

    Fascinating article Bear, perhaps we are how we think! Our health and well being can certainly be influenced by our beliefs, and as a direct result, our actions related to personal health. This makes perfect sense, we are systemically whole, not unrelated parts of mind, body, spirit. Thanks for sharing this!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. quiall says:

    very interesting!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think so, too … 😀 Though damage done is damage done … it points to … well lots of relationships and connections and previously rejected research and ideas may be resurrected … I am grateful this was found in a university lab and published in NATURE so that it is not repressed and hidden. Courageous work! I keep thinking about the … back-stories …

      Liked by 1 person


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