Neuronal 'On' and 'Off' signals control microglia

Knut Biber*, Harald Neumann, Kazuhide Inoue, Hendrikus W. G. M. Boddeke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

498 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Recent findings indicate that neurons are not merely passive targets of microglia but rather control microglial activity. The variety of different signals that neurons use to control microglia can be divided into two categories: 'Off' signals constitutively keep microglia in their resting state and antagonize proinflammatory activity. 'On' signals are inducible and include purines, chemokines, glutamate. They instruct microglia activation under pathological conditions towards a beneficial or detrimental phenotype. Various neuronal signaling molecules thus actively control microglia function, thereby contribute to the inflammatory milieu of the central nervous system. Thus, neurons should be envisaged as key immune modulators in the brain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)596-602
Number of pages7
JournalTrends in neurosciences
Volume30
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2007

Keywords

  • METABOTROPIC GLUTAMATE RECEPTORS
  • TUMOR-NECROSIS-FACTOR
  • CENTRAL-NERVOUS-SYSTEM
  • MATRIX METALLOPROTEINASE-3
  • HIPPOCAMPAL-NEURONS
  • ACTIVATED MICROGLIA
  • CULTURED MICROGLIA
  • DISTINCT FUNCTIONS
  • SPINAL MICROGLIA
  • OX2 GLYCOPROTEIN

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