A Gene Unique to the Brain’s Immune System

CC Image from Wikimedia

CC Image from Wikimedia

By: Tulani M.

Investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital have used a sequencing method to identify microglia, which are a group of genes in a brain’s immune cells that sense pathogenic organisms, toxins or damaged cells. Microglia can protect the body by engulfing the toxin, or it can send out toxins to take care of the pathogen. The sending out of these toxins can damage the brain even further. The identification of microglia could help scientists find out new ways to protect people against some mental diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, by allowing them to further understand microglia and create medicines based on that understanding.(Read more…)

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