Missing link found between brain, immune system

“I really did not believe there are structures in the body that we are not aware of. I thought the body was mapped. I thought that these discoveries ended somewhere around the middle of the last century. But apparently they have not.”

— Kevin Lee, Ph.D., chairman of the University of Virginia’s Department of Neuroscience

Researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have just made a stunning new discovery.

They’ve found a direct connection between the brain and the immune system.

This connection is made by vessels that were previously thought not to exist.

These UVA researchers suggest this could overturn years of textbook teaching.

Think about that for a moment.

Modern researchers have discovered an entirely new part of the body.

On top of that, they believe it could revolutionize the study and treatment of neurological diseases.

Diseases like autism, Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis.

In a new interview in the journal Nature, Kevin Lee described his reaction to the discovery:

“The first time these guys showed me the basic result, I just said one sentence: ‘They’ll have to change the textbooks,'” he said.

There has never been a lymphatic system for the central nervous system,” Lee added, noting that it could “fundamentally change the way people look at the central nervous system’s relationship with the immune system.”

His colleague, Jonathan Kipnis, Ph.D., also had some interesting observations about this new discovery.

Kipnis is a professor in the UVA Department of Neuroscience and director of UVA’s Center for Brain Immunology and Glia (BIG).

His take …

“Instead of asking, ‘How do we study the immune response of the brain?’ ‘Why do multiple sclerosis patients have the immune attacks?’ now we can approach this mechanistically.

“Because the brain is like every other tissue connected to the peripheral immune system through meningeal lymphatic vessels.

“It changes entirely the way we perceive the neuro-immune interaction. We always perceived it before as something esoteric that can’t be studied. But now we can ask mechanistic questions,” said Kipnis.

The unexpected discovery of these lymphatic vessels that connect the brain to the immune system is noteworthy.

That’s because it could result in better treatments — and potential cures — for various neurological diseases.

For example, Alzheimer’s disease.

“In Alzheimer’s, there are accumulations of big protein chunks in the brain,” Kipnis said. “We think they may be accumulating in the brain because they’re not being efficiently removed by these vessels.”

He noted that the vessels look different with age. So, the role they play in aging is another avenue to explore.

Other neurological diseases could see breakthroughs based on this discovery. Lee and Kipnis also suggest research could advance on autism and MS, among other diseases.

This is one of the biggest medical breakthroughs in recent memory. It adds to other recent discoveries that show how the body systems are all interconnected.

If you recall, a few weeks ago I wrote about the gut-brain connection. We discussed how researchers are finding more links between the health of your gut and neurological diseases.

Now, the research published in Nature shows the link between the brain and the immune system.

This trend in medical research is proving that the body is a sort of biological ecosystem — one where all systems work together.

This can allow doctors and scientists to looks at new sources of a disease — places where they previously might not have looked.

It appears science just got closer to discovering new cures for diseases we currently believe to be incurable. It’s a wonderful feeling to be able to witness these kinds of advancements … and to potentially be able to benefit from them in our lifetimes.

Happy and Healthy Investing,

Brad Hoppmann


Uncommon Wisdom Daily

Your thoughts on “Missing link found between brain, immune system”

  1. My surgical career was terminated years ago by autoimmune disease(s). I began in general practice and observing through many years, it became obvious (IMO) that severe depression triggered a sharp decrease in previous immune protection and these patients died from “unrelated diseases” such as pneumonia.

    Three years ago I began self treatment after reading a monumental article in 2012 by Drs. Edith & Patrick McGeer that after searching 10,000 candidates had found a compound that blocked the terminal protein in the Complement System, an ancient beginning of our extremely important immune system. These world class brain researchers first reported their discovery completely protected their target mice from developing Alzheimer’s Disease, and after reading this spectacular article in 2012 I immediately knew it would protect patients with Parkinson’s, Lupus, ALS, Pemphigus, Rheumatoid Arthritis, M.S., Age related Macular Degeneration as well as the other 100 + autoimmune diseases, as well as other diseases that are not yet considered as autoimmune diseases, one that I already know about!

    For me this finding fits in very nicely now and when fully proven their oral, non-toxic product is finally passed by the FDA.

    See their website, Aurin Biotech for further information.

  2. This requires me to re-learn everything I was taught about the human body, because everything I knew before may be wrong.

  3. Thanks for your neurologically related articles. I have ALS and never expected to see this info in a financial email. This new research might pave the way for help with ALS but probably not in my limited lifetime. However, it does give me hope for the future. Thank again.

  4. The neuro immune connection… I just wonder how long its going to take for scientists and the medical profession to do anything about this new discovery that will benefit people who are now suffering with immune disorder and autoimmune disorders? The brain gut connection has been known for quite some time but yet gastroenterologists medical doctors really do not know what to do with this information and knowledge in treating a patient with digestive disorders and neurological disorders! Knowledge is only beneficial if it is put to use and is a benefit to patients suffering from illnesses.

  5. Thank you so much for this and all the other info on health, investing, & related topics that make our lives so much richer and rewarding. I hope that the latest changes & stresses that have befallen Weiss and DiGeorgia operations resolve as profound lessons that help us all to learn and profit. Thanks and GodBless

  6. I’ve always believed there should be a link between these two most valuable parts of the ‘amazing human body,’ and I’m glad they found it!

  7. Dr Bruce Lipton, an early stem cell researcher, in his book The Biology of Belief: Unleashing the Power of Consciousness, Matter & Miracles (Pub. 2005) explained how all cells of your body are affected by your thoughts, how the mind controls the brain which in turn controls the body’s systems, how gene expression means that we are not limited by our DNA as previously assumed. He maintained then that all the standard textbooks were out of date and that traditional scientific dogma was preventing advances. He has said that despite the passage of 10 years there is still considerable resistance to change, largely because they continue to see the body as a machine in Newtonian terms whereas the new biology recognizes that we function on a quantum physics, energy, basis.

    Dr Joe Dispenza in his book You Are The Placebo (Pub. 2014) explains how thought alone can heal which although not mentioning Lipton does in effect build upon such scientific knowledge, that the mind through the brain does control the body.

    In view of the foregoing I am not convinced that the discovery is so ground-breaking but it is obviously to be welcomed if it advances medical practice.

  8. My husband died with vascular dementia and colon cancer. He also had diabetis and heart disease. I believe all his conditions could very well be connected.

  9. Thanks for the new information. I have a Down Syndrome who is 56 years old and has Dementia. I hope this will come into being while she is still alive. Doris

  10. Did the blind forces of nature just cause this to evolve this way? From a universe of empty space, nothingness, we have a great diversity of life with marvelous complex organism such as stated above: “the body is a sort of biological ecosystem — one where all systems work together.” There is an old saying, “nothing comes from nothing.” Even science books have long said all known life forms spring from prior life, no spontaneous generation (as proven by Louis Pasteur). Then there is the DNA which in living beings contains in microscopic size unseen to the human eye more information than in the greatest libraries in the world. Where did this come from? In every other human experience we agree that information or ordered knowledge springs from intelligence, not random chance. However, many of our great minds in science today are so arrogant that they overlook the obvious. As an ancient writer put it, “Only a fool says there is no God.”

  11. Brad,
    your weekly memo is the one I most look forward too.
    Whether it is about coffee, or neurology, it is a pleasant and welcome change from the daily doom and gloom wall street newsletters to which I am almost addicted to.
    keep up the great reports

  12. Re your gut-brain connection, my gastroenterologist called the Colon the” mirror of the mind” 30 years ago.

  13. What a miracle and maybe they can find something to stop, cure, contain Alz. Dementia is going to be the biggie coming up as we age, as sports get more violent, as people get more violent.

  14. Interesting find! I have been researching and using myself as a “gunny pig/ lab rat” since I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia 15 years ago. It took me 7 years of trial and error to slow the pain, brain fog and fatigue to get the disease into temporary remission. I DID HAVE 3 YEARS when I was almost pain free, able to exercise , perform normal functions and able to sleep without pain pills. Since then, I have had several several “episodes” that hit without a real warning. All of a sudden something was very wrong. There didn’t seem to be any pattern and I have felt that I was being blindsided. I will be watching for more information. Thank You

  15. As an anatomist, we have known the body is entirely interconnected for years. It is nice to see morphological evidence come to light. Such findings are not really a surprise. They are more like a validation of our philosophy.

    May I ask why I find scientific information on a site attached to the pursuit of better investments? You must have and interesting background.

  16. as a person with multiple sclerosis, I hope and pray for the day I can always get up and be able to walk without worry.

  17. Interesting! I bet if they look closer they will find this Neuro-immune system plays an important part in addictions in that it will be an allergic type of reaction!

  18. Discoveries never live up to the promise. We continue to treat diseases, but not cure them. Progress comes very very slowly. Suddenly we learn that the treatment is useless or worse than the disease. Sounds pessimistic but it is what it is.

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