Previous Page  11 / 48 Next Page
Information
Show Menu
Previous Page 11 / 48 Next Page
Page Background

9

INSIDE SALK

SPRING 2017

WWW.SALK.EDU

Normally when we think of viruses,

from the common cold to HIV, we

want to boost people’s immunity to

fight them. But for scientists who

develop therapeutic viruses (to, for

example, target cancer cells or correct

gene deficiencies) a more important

question is: How do we keep people’s

natural immune responses at bay?

In these cases, an overenthusiastic

immune response actually undermines

the therapy. Salk Associate Professor

Axel Nimmerjahn and first author

Yusuf Tufail—along with Associate

Professor Clodagh O’Shea, Professor

Greg Lemke and colleagues—

discovered that inhibiting a protein

called phospholipid scramblase 1

(PLSCR1) controls the infected cell’s

antiviral response and provides long-

term protection from immune attack

and excessive inflammation. The

results, described in the January 19,

2017, issue of

Neuron

, hold promise

both for virally delivered treatments

and inflammatory conditions like

infections, autoimmune disorders

such as lupus, or neurodegenerative

diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

CURB YOUR IMMUNE ENTHUSIASM

Left: Inhibiting the protein PLSCR1 controls

the infected cell’s antiviral response and provides

long-term protection from immune attack and

excessive inflammation. In the cortex of a mouse,

adenovirus-transduced cells (red) appear among

labeled microglia (dark blue) and subsets of

neurons (light blue).

Above: Yusuf Tufail (front) and Axel Nimmerjahn

WATCH

www.salk.edu/insidesalk/0417/nimmerjahn