Immunology of Neurodegeneration

The general goal of our research is to elucidate the interaction between the immune system and the central nervous system in the context of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. We are particularly interested in understanding how the accumulation of pathologically aggregated proteins (such as amyloid beta peptide) modulates the trafficking and function of antigen presenting cells and lymphocytes into the CNS. To this end we are applying classical neuroimmunological techniques to animal models of Alzheimer’s disease-like pathology. We employ mostly confocal microscopy and multicolour FACS analysis of surface and intracellular markers.

 

Funding: Forschungskredit, Hartmann-Muller Stiftung, Synapsis Foundation

Occurrence of CD3+ T-cells
Occurrence of CD3+ T-cells (red) in the brain of a 12-month old APP transgenic mouse with abundant cerebral amyloidosis (revealed by Thioflavin S staining, green) both around vessels (arrows) and in parenchmyal plaques (asterisks).