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Sunday, December 6, 2015

What are microglia?

Microglia is a type of glial cell which acts as the main form of immune defense in the central nervous system (brain and spine).

They make up between 10-15% of all brain cells, and are extremely sensitive; they are  supported by potassium.

These cells move about and "eat" plaque, damaged neurons, and infectious agents.

The blood-brain barrier prevents most infectious material from entering the brain, but if it does, microglia must act very quicky to decrease inflammation and destroy the infection.

Because the blood-brain barrier (BBB), prevents antibodies from crossing it, microglia do the job of fighting infection instead.

If inflammation increases instead of decreases, the microglia stop functioning effectively.

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