Cytokines in brain trauma and spinal cord injury

Roberta Brambilla, Valerie Bracchi-Ricard, John R Bethea

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Following traumatic injury to the central nervous system (CNS), cytokine levels rapidly increase at the site of lesion. Cytokines are produced at high concentrations by resident cells of the brain and spinal cord parenchyma (astrocytes, neurons, microglial cells) and by immune cells (macrophages, leukocytes), infiltrating the injured tissue through a compromised blood-brain barrier (BBB). Cytokines are commonly categorized into pro- and anti-inflammatory, based on the concept that they promote either positive or negative effects on the recovery of the injured CNS. However, an increasing body of evidence, provided mainly by recent studies in knock-out and transgenic models (see a summary of these studies in Table 13.1 and Table 13.2), reveals the existence of a more complicated scenario, as cytokines promoting negative inflammatory events at early stages following CNS trauma are found to participate in beneficial regenerative events at later phases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCytokines and the CNS
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9781420039849
ISBN (Print)0849316227, 9780849316227
StatePublished - Jan 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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