Multiple Sclerosis Resource Centre

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Role of inflammation and apoptosis in multiple sclerosis: Comparative analysis between the periphery and the central nervous system (Review Article)

Beatrice Macchi, Francesca Marino-Merlo, Ugo Nocentini, Valerio Pisani, Salvatore Cuzzocrea, Sandro Grelli, Antonio Mastino

Journal of Neuroimmunology, Volume 287, 15 October 2015, Pages 80–87


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex, multifactorial disease associated with damage to the axonal myelin sheaths and neuronal degeneration. The pathognomonic event in MS is oligodendrocyte loss accompanied by axonal damage, blood–brain barrier leakage, inflammation and infiltration of immune cells. The etiopathogenesis of MS is far from being elucidated. However, increasing evidence suggests that the inflammatory and apoptotic responses, occurring in patients either at the peripheral level or the central nervous system (CNS), can play a role. In this review, we give a comprehensive picture of general aspects of inflammation and apoptosis in MS, with special emphasis on the until now not well highlighted possible links between phenomena relevant to these aspects occurring in either the periphery or in the CNS during MS.