Research press release


Nature Medicine

Sticky seizures


てんかんの患者は世界人口の約1%にも上るが、どのような仕組みで起こるのかはほとんど解明されていない。G Constantinたちは、マウスの脳血管で発作によって接着分子の発現が誘導され、脳の循環系中の白血球が停滞することを明らかにした。これらの細胞と血管との相互作用を阻害したり、白血球の一種である好中球を激減させたりすると、てんかん発作が著しく減少した。


A possible link between epileptic seizures and an interaction between immune cells and brain blood vessels is reported online this week in Nature Medicine. The study indicates that these interactions might be a target for the prevention and treatment of epilepsy.

Although epilepsy affects about 1% of the world population, its underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Gabriela Constantin and colleagues show that seizures induce the expression of adhesion molecules in blood vessels of mice brains, holding immune cells called leukocytes in the circulatory system of the brain. Stopping the interactions of these cells with blood vessels or depleting certain immune cells known as neutrophils markedly reduced seizures.

The authors also found that seizures caused the barrier between the blood and the brain to become leaky, a phenomenon known to enhance the tendency of neurons to become active. However, blocking the binding of leukocytes to brain vessels prevented such a leak, linking leukocyte-blood vessel interactions, damage to the blood-brain barrier and seizure generation. Finally, the team found that leukocytes were more abundant in brains of people with epilepsy than in healthy subjects, a finding consistent with a potential leukocyte involvement in human epilepsy.

doi: 10.1038/nm.1878


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