Dr. Craig Moore - January 16
Regulating Innate and Adaptive Immune Mechanisms during Neuroinflammatory Injury and Repair
In the inflamed central nervous system (CNS), cells of the immune system participate in roles that are important for both responding to injury and initiating tissue repair. While the field of neuroimmunology has made considerable gains in understanding disease-relevant interactions between immune and brain cells during acute infection and injury, much little is known with respect to long-term and chronic neurodegenerative conditions. In the inflamed brain, the functional role of glial cells (e.g. astrocytes and microglia) remains enigmatic, yet both cell types are important and direct contributors to both inflammatory and repair mechanisms following injury. Furthermore, expression profiles of microRNAs, small non-coding RNA molecules involved in regulating post-transcriptional activities of mRNA transcripts, are thought to significantly influence the plasticity and functional roles of immune and neural cells in diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and ALS. It is hypothesized that expression of distinct microRNAs in the immune and central nervous systems will provide insights into cell function and the capacity for cells to influence cellular mechanisms related to both brain injury and repair.