Antibodies as ‘messengers’ in the nervous system

Antibodies are able to activate human nerve cells within milliseconds and hence modify their function — that is the surprising conclusion of a study carried out at Human Biology at the Technical University of Munich (TUM). This knowledge improves our understanding of illnesses that accompany certain types of cancer, above all severe intestinal malfunctions.

Functional disorders in organs that manifest in conjunction with tumors are called paraneoplastic syndromes. These syndromes are not caused by the primary tumor itself, but are instead frequently a result of the body’s autoimmune reaction. In such cases, a person’s own antibodies turn against their own cells and attack them. Paraneoplastic syndromes often occur before the tumor is even detected.

— source tum.de

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