Researchers have suspected for a few years that neurotransmitters like dopamine play a role in how the immune system functions. But they didn’t know how cells in the immune system would actually used dopamine. A paper published on July 12 of this year shows for the first time that cells in the immune system send dopamine to other cells to trigger them into action. This is just like how neurons use dopamine in the brain! Check out the infographic for a summary of the discovery!
Papa, Ilenia, David Saliba, Maurilio Ponzoni, Sonia Bustamante, Pablo F. Canete, Paula Gonzalez-Figueroa, Hayley A. Mcnamara, Salvatore Valvo, Michele Grimbaldeston, Rebecca A. Sweet, Harpreet Vohra, Ian A. Cockburn, Michael Meyer-Hermann, Michael L. Dustin, Claudio Doglioni, and Carola G. Vinuesa. (2017). TFH-derived dopamine accelerates productive synapses in germinal centres. Nature.
Qi, Hai. (2017). Immunology: Nervous crosstalk to make antibodies. Nature.