Immune Tolerance in Autoimmune Central Nervous System Disorders

  • Sundararajan Jayaraman
  • Bellur S. PrabhakarEmail author
Part of the Contemporary Clinical Neuroscience book series (CCNE)


Multiple sclerosis (MS) afflicts genetically predisposed individuals and is associated with T lymphocyte-mediated damage to the myelin sheath of neurons in the central nervous system, resulting in severely impaired signal transmission. The mechanisms of the induction and manifestation of MS are not entirely understood. The control of autoimmune disorders is accomplished by both central tolerance in which autoreactive T lymphocytes are eliminated in the thymus and by tolerance mechanisms that operate in the periphery. Among the many mechanisms described, T regulatory (Treg) cells derived from the thymus (tTregs) and induced (iTregs) in the periphery as well as T regulatory type 1 cells (Tr1) are involved in many disease models. However, the precise details of the generation and perpetuation of these various Treg subsets and their relevance to the regulation of autoimmune diseases remain elusive. In this review, we critically analyze the current knowledge of the tolerance mechanisms involved in the regulation of MS and its animal model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.


Anergy Autoimmune diseases Blood-brain barrier Central nervous system Cerebrospinal fluid Foxp3 GM-CSF Human leukocyte antigen Interferon-γ Interleukin 17 Myelin basic protein Multiple sclerosis Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein Neuromyelitis optica Proteolipid protein Th1 Th17 T regulatory cells Trichostatin A Tumor necrosis factor-α, Tolerance 



Arathi Jayaraman is acknowledged for comments on the manuscript.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of Illinois College of MedicinePeoriaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology & ImmunologyUniversity of Illinois College of MedicineChicagoUSA

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