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J Neuroimmunol. 1999 Nov 15;101(2):111-27.

Role of the cervical lymphatics in the Th2-type hierarchy of CNS immune regulation.

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Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912, USA.


CNS immune regulation is intimately dependent on the dynamics of cerebral extracellular fluid circulation. Animal models indicate that following the introduction of antigen into the CNS, normal circulation of interstitial and cerebrospinal fluids provides the opportunity for (a) delivery of CNS-derived antigen to lymphoid organs, as well as, (b) retention of immunologically significant amounts of antigen within the CNS. Thus, even in the absence of disease, CNS-derived antigen can induce antigen-specific activation of naive lymphocytes in lymphoid organs and specific reactivation of lymphoblasts that have migrated into the CNS. The initial peripheral immune response to CNS-derived antigen is induced in cervical lymph nodes and is characterized by a strong antibody response, no delayed-type hypersensitivity, and only priming for cytotoxic T-cell responses. This Th-2 type hierarchy of immune regulation is reinforced within the antigen-stimulated CNS where specific B lymphoblasts are permitted to develop their effector function but cell-mediated immunity is inhibited. Developing a paradigm for CNS immune regulation is important in understanding how CNS disorders in humans are induced, perpetuated, and may be manipulated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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