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Neuron. 2004 Feb 5;41(3):323-35.

Cytosolic phospholipase A2 plays a key role in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis-like disease.

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Centre for Research in Neuroscience, The Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, Quebec H3G 1A4, Canada.


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system (CNS) that results in motor and sensory deficits. Although MS and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), are thought to be T cell-mediated diseases, the mechanisms underlying the lesions in the CNS are not fully understood. We propose that a strong candidate as a central mediator in evoking the complex pathological changes seen in MS and EAE is the enzyme cytosolic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2). One of the metabolic products of this enzyme is pro-inflammatory, while the other induces myelin breakdown, demyelination, and chemokine/cytokine expression. We provide evidence that cPLA2 is highly expressed in EAE lesions and show that blocking this enzyme leads to a remarkable reduction in the onset and progression of EAE.

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