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Curr Opin Neurobiol DOI:10.1016/j.conb.2015.12.004

New insights on the role of microglia in synaptic pruning in health and disease.

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsHong, S, Dissing-Olesen, L, Stevens, B
JournalCurr Opin Neurobiol
Date Published2016 Feb
KeywordsAlzheimer Disease, Animals, Brain, Disease Models, Animal, Genome-Wide Association Study, Humans, Microglia, Neuronal Plasticity

Recent genome-wide association studies implicate microglia in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis; however, their biological significance remains poorly understood. Synapse loss is a significant correlate of cognitive decline that serves as a critical hallmark of AD and other neurodegenerative diseases; however, mechanisms underlying synaptic vulnerability remain elusive. Emerging research on microglia function in the healthy brain is providing new insight into fundamental roles of microglia and immune molecules in brain wiring. Among their many roles, microglia prune developing synapses and regulate synaptic plasticity and function. Here, we review and discuss how this emerging work may provide new insight into how disruptions in microglia-synapse interactions could contribute to synapse loss and dysfunction, and consequently cognitive impairment, in AD.


Alternate JournalCurr. Opin. Neurobiol.
PubMed ID26745839
PubMed Central IDPMC5479435
Grant ListT32 AG000222 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
U54 HD090255 / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
AG000222 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States