Seija Lehnardt

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Innate immunity is an evolutionarily ancient system that provides organisms with immediately available defense mechanisms through recognition of pathogen-associated molecular patterns. We show that in the CNS, specific activation of innate immunity through a Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4)-dependent pathway leads to neurodegeneration. We identify microglia as(More)
The immediate or innate immune response is the first line of defense against diverse microbial pathogens and requires the expression of recently discovered toll-like receptors (TLRs). TLR4 serves as a specific receptor for lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and is localized on the surface of a subset of mammalian cells. Although innate immunity is a necessary host(More)
Toll-like receptors (TLR) recognize molecular structures associated with pathogens as well as host-derived components and initiate an inflammatory innate immune response. Microglia represent the resident immune host defense and are the major inflammatory cell type in the central nervous system (CNS). We show here that TLR2-deficient mice develop a decreased(More)
Microglia are key players of the immune response in the central nervous system (CNS) and, being the resident innate immune cells, they are responsible for the early control of infections and for the recruitment of cells of the adaptive immune system required for pathogen clearance. The innate and adaptive immune responses triggered by microglia include the(More)
Activation of innate immune receptors by host-derived factors exacerbates CNS damage, but the identity of these factors remains elusive. We uncovered an unconventional role for the microRNA let-7, a highly abundant regulator of gene expression in the CNS, in which extracellular let-7 activates the RNA-sensing Toll-like receptor (TLR) 7 and induces(More)
Diffuse infiltration of glioma cells into normal brain tissue is considered to be a main reason for the unfavorable outcomes of patients with malignant gliomas. Invasion of glioma cells into the brain parenchyma is facilitated by metalloprotease-mediated degradation of the extracellular matrix. Metalloproteases are released as inactive pro-forms and get(More)
Infection, ischemia, trauma, and neoplasia elicit a similar inflammatory response in the CNS characterized by activation of microglia, the resident CNS monocyte. The molecular events leading from CNS injury to the activation of innate immunity is not well understood. We show here that the intracellular chaperone heat shock protein 60 (HSP60) serves as a(More)
Neuronal damage in autoimmune neuroinflammation is the correlate for long-term disability in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. Here, we investigated the role of immune cells in neuronal damage processes in animal models of MS by monitoring experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) by using two-photon microscopy of living anaesthetized mice. In the(More)
Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is a major cause of bacterial meningitis and neurological morbidity in newborn infants. The cellular and molecular mechanisms by which this common organism causes CNS injury are unknown. We show that both heat-inactivated whole GBS and a secreted proteinaceous factor from GBS (GBS-F) induce neuronal apoptosis via the activation(More)
Innate immunity relies on pattern recognition receptors to detect the presence of infectious pathogens. In the case of Gram-positive bacteria, binding of bacterial lipopeptides to TLR2 is currently regarded as an important mechanism. In the present study, we used the synthetic bacterial lipopeptide Pam3CysSK4, a selective TLR2 agonist, to induce meningeal(More)