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Central nervous system lymphatic unit, immunity and epilepsy: is there a link?

Abstract : The recent definition of a network of lymphatic vessels in the meninges surrounding the brain and the spinal cord has advanced our knowledge on the functional anatomy of fluid movement within the central nervous system (CNS). Meningeal lymphatic vessels along dural sinuses and main nerves contribute to cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) drainage, integrating the cerebrovascular and periventricular routes, and forming a circuit that we here define as the CNS-lymphatic unit. The latter unit is important for parenchymal waste clearance, brain homeostasis, and the regulation of immune or inflammatory processes within the brain. Disruption of fluid drain mechanisms may promote or sustain CNS disease, conceivably applicable to epilepsy where extracellular accumulation of macromolecules and metabolic by-products occur in the interstitial and perivascular spaces. Herein we address an emerging concept and propose a theoretical framework on: (a) how a defect of brain clearance of macromolecules could favor neuronal hyperexcitability and seizures, and (b) whether meningeal lymphatic vessel dysfunction contributes to the neuroimmune cross-talk in epileptic pathophysiology. We propose possible molecular interventions targeting meningeal lymphatic dysfunctions, a potential target for immune-mediated epilepsy.
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Submitted on : Sunday, December 1, 2019 - 9:13:00 AM
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Francesco Mattia Noè, Nicola Marchi. Central nervous system lymphatic unit, immunity and epilepsy: is there a link?. Epilepsia Open, The International League Against Epilepsy 2019, 4 (1), pp.30-39. ⟨10.1002/epi4.12302⟩. ⟨inserm-02388110⟩



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