Immune cells to limit secondary damage from stroke..
Immune cells to limit the secondary damage after a cerebral vascular accident (stroke) have been discovered by a research team which includes Dr. Serge Rivest, University Laval.

Experiments on mice show that three days after a stroke, the damaged area is larger than 20% when the regulatory T cells (Treg) were blocked.

In fact, after a stroke, several types of immune cells are sent to clean up the damaged area, but they can damage healthy cells in the brain, increasing the size of the affected region.

The Treg cells will somehow curb the enthusiasm of other immune cells, which will limit secondary damage, "says Serge Rivest. So researchers decided to modulate the activity of other immune cells without blocking.

In doing so, Treg cells may also help limit the effects due to a stroke, such as difficulty speaking or loss of motor functions.

Treg cells are produced in the bone marrow, small in quantity and migrate to the brain after stroke occurs. A cocktail of drugs to stimulate the production of these cells is already known, but the researcher says Quebec that this combination of molecules can affect other immune cells. "It's a double-edged sword" concedes there". "We must find a way of stimulating Treg cells only." If scientists can find a more precise method, treatment can be developed.

Begun three years ago in collaboration with German researchers, the research on Treg cells could help in the near future to limit secondary damage not only for stroke but also for most injuries to the brain, like concussion (Mild traumatic brain injury). This study results were published in the journal of "Nature Medicine".


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