Direct Interaction between Autonomic Nerves and the Immune System.
Annual rept. Jul 84-Jul 86,
ROCHESTER UNIV NY SCHOOL OF MEDICINE AND DENTISTRY
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This project examines interactions between autonomic nerves and the immune system. Noradrenergic sympathetic nerves are present in lymphoid organs, particularly in T cell compartments and macrophage zones of spleen and lymph nodes. Neurochemical studies reveal both the presence and availability of norepinephrine in spleen and lymph nodes, and the presence of acetylcholine in spleen. Following surgical ablation or neurochemical denervation of the noradrenergic nerves innervating spleen and lymph nodes, many immune parameters are altered, including primary and secondary antibody responses, mitogen responses, delayed-type hypersensitivity reaction, and additional in vitro measurements. We have begun studies with cold exposure in mice, where this aversive condition can lead to suppressed immune responses. Our present findings indicate that the autonomic nerves innervating spleen and lymph nodes are necessary for immunocompetence, and that neurotransmitters used by these nerves may be a class of molecules that exert an immunomodulatory influence in lymphoid organs.
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medicine and Medical Research