Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology

, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 774–790 | Cite as

Adaptive Immune Responses in CNS Autoimmune Disease: Mechanisms and Therapeutic Opportunities



The processes underlying autoimmune CNS inflammation are complex, but key roles for autoimmune lymphocytes seem inevitable, based on clinical investigations in multiple sclerosis (MS) and related diseases such as neuromyelitis optica, together with the known pathogenic activity of T cells in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) models. Despite intense investigation, the details of etiopathology in these diseases have been elusive. Here we describe recent advances in the rodent models that begin to allow a map of pathogenic and protective immunity to be drawn. This map might illuminate previous successful and unsuccessful therapeutic strategies targeting particular pathways, whilst also providing better opportunities for the future, leading to tailored intervention based on understanding the quality of each individual’s autoimmune response.


Multiple sclerosis EAE Autoimmunity T cells 



Work in the authors’ laboratory is supported by grants from the UK Medical Research Council and the Wellcome Trust.

Conflict of Interest

The authors have no financial conflicts of interest to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Inflammation Research and Centre for Multiple Sclerosis Research, Queen’s Medical Research InstituteUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK
  2. 2.Centre for Inflammation Research, Queen’s Medical Research InstituteUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK

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