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PAEDIATRICS

Gut-derived T cells might cause brain injury in NEC

Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is an acute intestinal emergency in preterm infants, which is often later complicated by cognitive delay and neurodevelopmental disability. A new study performed in mice suggests that CD4+ T cells can travel from the NEC-inflamed gut to the brain and cause IFNγ-mediated brain injury.

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Fig. 1: Proposed mechanism for white matter injury in preterm infants with NEC.

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Correspondence to Jörn-Hendrik Weitkamp.

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J.-H.W. serves as a consultant to Roche Diagnostics Corporation.

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Weitkamp, JH. Gut-derived T cells might cause brain injury in NEC. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 18, 291–292 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41575-021-00432-6

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