Journal of Neurology

, Volume 261, Issue 10, pp 2037–2042 | Cite as

Recent advances in the neuroimmunology of cell-surface CNS autoantibody syndromes, Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain injury and schizophrenia

  • Ed Needham
  • Michael S. ZandiEmail author
Neurological Update


In this update, we review recent advances in antibody-associated disorders of the central nervous system, and the immune mechanisms which may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain injury and schizophrenia. The field of neuroimmunology is rapidly developing and has concerned itself with an expanding portfolio of diseases. The core neuroimmunological diseases remain, multiple sclerosis, neuromyelitis optica, primary inflammatory and antibody-associated disorders of the central and peripheral nervous system (including Myasthenia Gravis and other disorders of neuromuscular junction and muscle, paraneoplastic syndromes, paraproteinaemic neuropathies), and the neurological involvement seen in systemic inflammatory diseases including lupus, sarcoidosis and vasculitis. But it is increasingly realised that immune mechanisms may contribute to the pathogenesis of degenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain disease and psychiatric diseases including schizophrenia and depression. These common and devastating disorders, often without effective disease-modifying therapies, are yet to be seen in a conventional neuroimmunology clinic, but the immune mechanisms identified have encouraged research into novel therapeutic approaches for them.


Neuroimmunology Schizophrenia Psychosis Alzheimer’s disease Traumatic brain injury NMDAR encephalitis 


Conflicts of interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Ethical standard

The manuscript meets the ethical standards required for publishing.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Clinical NeurosciencesAddenbrooke’s Hospital, University of CambridgeCambridgeUK
  2. 2.NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research CentreCambridgeUK

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