Volume 8 Issue 4

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Page 20 | Abby's Magazine | By Dr. Mercola That your immune system is your first line of defense against disease is nothing new. Interes ngly, recent research suggests your immune system may also play a role in your social interac ons. In fact, researchers now believe your immune system may actually be a controlling factor in your behavior. In the referenced study, by blocking a specific immune molecule in the brain of a mouse, the mouse brain displayed hyperac vity, resul ng in abnormal, and asocial behavior. When they restored the molecule, both problems disappeared. Is Your Personality Dictated by Your Immune System? Scien sts believe this discovery may have "enormous implica ons for neurological condi ons such as au sm and schizophrenia." According to Jonathan Kipnis, Ph.D., chairman of the Department of Neuroscience and director of the Center for Brain Immunology at the University of Virginia (UVA) School of Medicine: "The brain and the adap ve immune system were thought to be isolated from each other, and any immune ac vity in the brain was perceived as sign of a pathology. And now, not only are we showing that they are closely interac ng, but some of our behavior traits might have evolved because of our immune response to pathogens. It's crazy, but maybe we are just mul cellular ba lefields for two ancient forces: pathogens and the immune system. Part of our personality may actually be dictated by the immune system." Your Brain, Gut and Immune System Are All Linked Kipnis was part of the team that, just last year, discovered there's a direct link between the brain and immune system. Similar to blood vessels that carry blood throughout your body, previously unknown lympha c vessels carry immune cells throughout your body, including your brain, which was previously thought to be impossible. It's becoming increasingly clear that your brain, immune system and your gut microbes are intricately linked, affec ng each other in surprising ways. Au sm, for instance, is associated with gastrointes nal problems and, poten ally, an over-reac on in the immune system. Neurological diseases like mul ple sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer's have also been linked to immune dysfunc on, and autoimmune diseases such as Crohn's disease share certain traits with psychiatric illness. It wasn't always clear how such connec ons occurred, but now scien sts have uncovered three important and interconnected pieces: •The gut-brain axis (in recent research, scien sts were even able to raise or lower blood sugar and insulin, and increase or suppress hunger, simply by ac va ng and deac va ng certain neurons) •The pathway between your immune system and your brain •The influence of your immune system on your brain and behavior In addi on to that, we now know your micro biome also helps control gene expression, so by op mizing your gut flora, you are actually influencing your genes in a posi ve way. How Interferon Gamma Influences Your Brain and Behavior Ge ng back to the featured study, the UVA reports that: IMMUNE SYSTEM Helps Direct Your Social Interactions How Your Award-Winning Omega-3s & P O T E N C Y PURITY G U A R A N T E E D F R ES H N ES S Safe • Pure • FDA-Registered Laboratory Tested All Carlson Products On Sale in March

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