Through pioneering research by AZTherapies’ founders and other renowned scientists, it is becoming increasingly clear that neuroinflammation plays a critical role in neuronal death in the brain and spinal column, resulting in cognitive and motor function impairment. This research also indicates that maintaining healthy microglia, a vital part of immune response within the central nervous system (CNS), could be key to slowing or halting neurodegenerative disease.
SHIFTING MICROGLIA INTO THEIR NEUROPROTECTIVE STATE
Microglia are one of the brain’s primary defenses against pathogens and injury. They are innate immune cells that exist in two states.
In their neuroprotective state, microglia migrate around the CNS helping maintain neuronal health and clearing foreign matter, debris, and plaques. When activated by invasion, injury, or ischemia (restriction of blood supply and oxygen), microglia shift into their pro-inflammatory state, releasing immune-stimulating cytokines and free radicals to help defend against pathogens and tumors. In the absence of disease, microglia maintain homeostasis and effectively carry out both of these roles.
However, neurodegenerative diseases have been shown to cause chronic neuroinflammation that results in microglia shifting predominantly into their pro-inflammatory state, a process called microgliosis, exacerbating the neuroinflammation and causing neurotoxicity, further damage, and neuronal death.
At AZTherapies, we have discovered ways to potentially shift microglia from this chronic pro-inflammatory state to their neuroprotective state. Our robust product pipeline leverages these insights, and, we believe, has the potential to treat a broad array of serious diseases resulting from unchecked neuroinflammation.