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Sci. STKE, 4 September 2007
Vol. 2007, Issue 402, p. pe47
Toll-Like Receptors in Brain Development and Homeostasis
Peter H. Larsen,
Thomas H. Holm, and
Medical Biotechnology Center, University of Southern Denmark, Winsloewparken 25, DK-5000 Odense C, Denmark.
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are best known as initiators of the innate immune response to pathogens. Recent reports now reveal intriguing roles for TLRs in the central nervous system (CNS). These include the regulation of neuroinflammation and of neurite outgrowth. The archetypal Toll protein in Drosophila melanogaster was implicated in the development of the nervous system. Now similar functions have been uncovered for the mammalian orthologs, the TLRs. TLRs expressed on CNS glia and neurons may recognize endogenous ligands and participate both in development and in responses associated with CNS injury.