Neuroimmunology

Hauling away injured neurons

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Science  03 Aug 2018:
Vol. 361, Issue 6401, pp. 464-465
DOI: 10.1126/science.361.6401.464-f

Microglia are specialized immune cells of the central nervous system that recognize and help remove defunct neurons during development. Norris et al. asked whether microglia can curb injury after brain damage. Using a mouse model of optic nerve crush injury, they find that microglia produce complement proteins to help identify destroyed tissue. Activated microglia cleared debris and prevented damage from spreading to neighboring neurons. This newly identified mechanism may have implications for limiting brain and spinal cord injuries.

J. Exp. Med. 10.1084/jem.20172244 (2018).

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