Mechanisms of Nervous System Damage and Immunological Escape by Zika Virus

Ahmed Ebrahim Introduction. Zika virus (ZIKV) is a single-stranded RNA flavivirus that is believed to be primarily spread through vector-born transmission such as mosquitos and can cause neurologic illness such as microcephaly.[1] Most adult cases of ZIKV are asymptomatic. Symptomatic adult cases typically present with mild symptoms such as fever and conjunctivitis and resolve within […]

Manipulation of the Microbiome-Gut-Brain Axis in Infants May Influence the Development of Autism and Other Psychological Disorders

Britton Eastburn Introduction Neuroactive compounds produced by the normal microbiota colonizing the human gut have been found to directly influence a range of neurological and behavioral parameters such as mood, cognition, sleep, and appetite1, 2. Indeed, therapeutic manipulation of the microbiome using probiotics, for example, has proven successful in relieving symptoms associated with these parameters, […]

The Role of the Intestinal Microbiome in the Pathogenesis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Rachael Helpenstell Counts  Introduction.  Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by limited social communication skills and stereotypical behavioral patterns.1,2 Many ASD patients also have gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms.2 Because of the heterogeneity of ASD, it is difficult to identify a single cause. However, environment, especially the intestinal microbiome, plays an important role.1-3 The […]

Reduction of Tau Hyperphosphorylation through Selenomethionine as a Therapeutic Agent for Alzheimer’s Disease

Su Min Cho Introduction: Alzheimer’s disease is currently the leading cause of dementia and continues to rise in prevalence as the population ages[1]. Tau proteins are believed to play a major role in various neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease[1,2]. Tau is normally a soluble, microtubule-binding protein that stabilizes the microtubules of axons in the central […]

The role of signaling pathways in response to mitochondrial dysfunction in neurodegenerative disease

Zoe Blumenthal Introduction: Mitochondria are double membrane-bound organelles found in all eukaryotic organisms with an independent genome from the cell’s DNA. Mitochondria serve an important function in the cell to produce ATP energy and regulate cellular metabolism. When responding to stress, the mitochondria utilize complementary pathways to determine cellular fate1,2,3. Researchers have set out to […]

Fecal Transplantation to Modulate Abnormal Gut Microbiota in Autism Spectrum Disorder Individuals

Christian Beltran  Introduction. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopment disorder that presents with early deficits in social communication and unusual restricted and repetitive behaviors.1 It has been established that the gut microbiome differs between children with ASD with functional gastrointestinal disorders and neurotypical (NT) children functional gastrointestinal disorders.2,3 There is a strong link between […]

Potential mechanisms of Zika Neuropathogenesis

George Bailey Introduction: Zika virus (ZIKV) is a single stranded positive RNA flavivirus originally thought only to cause mild illness that rarely needed treatment; however, in recent outbreaks it has been associated with severe neurological conditions such as Guillan-Barre and fetal microcephaly. Studies show that ZIKV utilizes different cell-surface receptors (AXL and TIM-1) to mediate […]

The Role of Neuronal Histone H3 Modifications in Mediating Alcohol Intake

Jonathan Artz  Background.  Repeated alcohol use results in altered gene expression responsible for the pathological neurobiological and behavioral changes associated with Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD).5 Strong cravings for alcohol, loss of self-control, development of physical dependence, and an increased tolerance for alcohol are some of the behaviors associated with AUD.7 Neuronal epigenetic modifications have been […]

The AXL Receptor: An Incomplete Explanation of how Zika Virus Infects the CNS

Braden Danbury  Introduction. The ongoing Zika epidemic has drawn attention to the neurological consequences of congenital ZikV infection1-3.  Studies have established a causal link between ZikV and abnormal brain development in murine models and models using cerebral organoids3, 6.  Preventing this irreparable damage caused by ZikV has fueled research to understand the mechanisms behind vertical […]