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Nat Rev Neurosci. 2008 Jun;9(6):481-93. doi: 10.1038/nrn2398.

Can the immune system be harnessed to repair the CNS?

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Ohio State University, 786 Biomedical Research Tower, 460 W. 12th Avenue, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA.


Experimental and clinical data have demonstrated that activating the immune system in the CNS can be destructive. However, other studies have shown that enhancing an immune response can be therapeutic, and several clinical trials have been initiated with the aim of boosting immune responses in the CNS of individuals with spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Here, we evaluate the controversies in the field and discuss the remaining scientific challenges that are associated with enhancing immune function in the CNS to treat neurological diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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