What protects the brain from viruses?

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Paul Anderson

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What protects the brain from viruses?
« on: 31/10/2010 13:30:08 »
Paul Anderson  asked the Naked Scientists:
Hi Chris and team,

The umbilical cord is supposed to stop the mother's blood mixing with the embryo's blood, although I gather some foetal blood does mix with the mother's blood.  Isn't that implicated in RH  and RH- and the first baby being okay but the mother developing antibodies which means subsequent babies have problems. Is this right?

With Herpes Simplex being implicated in Alzheimer's is it somehow possible to modify the Herpes Simplex virus so that the virus is too big to penetrate into the brain? Is there something between the brain and the rest of the body which is supposed to help protect the brain acting as some sort of filter? I thought I once read about something like that. Is there any sort of marker which will show up Herpes Simplex viruses?
When researchers use dyes or radioactive markers, how can they always be sure that they are inert and do not create a modification in the environment which distorts whatever they might be researching?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 31/10/2010 13:30:08 by _system »



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What protects the brain from viruses?
« Reply #1 on: 31/10/2010 15:00:40 »
Spend a little time learning about the blood brain barrier.