Science Times: Silencing the Chatter Between the Spine and the Spleen After Spinal Cord Injury

Infection is among the leading causes of morbidity and mortality after spinal cord injury (SCI).1 Despite the immediate consequences of motor paralysis and its contributions to infection, including neurogenic bladder and dysphagia, there is believed to be an even higher projected infection risk resulting from another phenomenon known as SCI-induced immune depression syndrome.2 It is believed this neuron-mediated ablation of the immune system is related to an exaggerated reflex activation of the sympathetic preganglionic neurons after SCI. A recent report by Ueno et al3 attempts to elucidate the cellular mechanism by which SCI contributes to the clinically observed phenomenon of SCI-induced immune depression syndrome.

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