Role of several viruses, including HHV-6A/B, in stimulating low-grade neuroinflammation.
One of the most important paradigm shifts in neurobiology in recent decades has been the recognition that glial cells—astrocytes, microglia and oligodendrocytes—are not simply the scaffolding around neurons: they are critically important in synapse formation and pruning, myelination, neurotransmission and immune defense/inflammation.
A second paradigm shift involves the growing evidence that chronic low-grade neuroinflammation may play an important role in the pathogenesis of several neurological diseases, including depression. A third paradigm shift—still of uncertain importance—is the possibility that chronic infection of the brain may be one cause of such chronic low-grade neuroinflammation. Given that herpesviruses are capable of infecting cells of the central nervous system chronically, they are obvious candidates to be one cause of such chronic low-grade neuroinflammation.
Investigators from the Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine have published a review of the possible role of glial cells in the development of depression. They focus on studies of HHV-6 as well as SARS-CoV-2, BoDV-1, ZIKV and HIV, and the somewhat different mechanisms by which each of the viruses may elicit chronic neuroinflammation, as shown in Figure 1.
The review provides some useful literature references for those interested in the possible role of infectious-agent-induced neuroinflammation in various neurological diseases.
Read the full article: Yu 2023