Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Repeated social defeat causes neuroinflammation and memory impairment.

I pass on the significance statement from McKim et al., the link gives the more technical abstract.
Repeated exposure to stress alters the homeostatic environment of the brain, giving rise to various cognitive and mood disorders that impair everyday functioning and overall quality of life. The brain, previously thought of as an immune-privileged organ, is now known to communicate extensively with the peripheral immune system. This brain–body communication plays a significant role in various stress-induced inflammatory conditions, also characterized by psychological impairments. Findings from this study implicate neuroimmune activation rather than impaired neurogenesis in stress-induced cognitive deficits. This idea opens up possibilities for novel immune interventions in the treatment of cognitive and mood disturbances, while also adding to the complexity surrounding the functional implications of adult neurogenesis.

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