Characterisation of the role of astrocytic B2-adrenergic receptors in multiple sclerosis: an invivo approach.

  • Clinckers, Ralph, (Administrative Promotor)

Project Details


Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, disabling disease of the central nervous system (CNS), mainly affecting young women. Due to its chronicity and its preponderance to affect young patients MS has a major socio-economic impact.

The cause of MS remains largely unknown. Unraveling the mechanism causative for MS by means of animal models remains a cornerstone in our growing knowledge about this mysterious disease. These models mimic many of the typical aspects of MS. However, these models have important shortcomings not in the least proven by the fact that many drugs, effective in the models, failed to be efficient in humans.

The aim of this project is to develop a more accurate model based on a new hypothesis about MS. In this hypothesis we propose that a virus disturbs the normal functioning of astrocytes, a cell type most important for the normal function of the CNS. Viruses have been shown to interfere with the expression of ?-adrenergic receptors (major players in the normal function of astrocytes) on astrocytes. Moreover it has been shown that astrocytes in MS patients lack this receptor, in contrast with healthy patients, and that viral particles are linked to the risk of developing MS.

In practice we will try to develop two new animal models for MS based on this central hypothesis:

1/ By infecting animals with certain viruses (CDV, Theiler .).
2/ By "deleting" the ?-adrenergic receptors in the astrocytes of living mice.

These new models will give us new insights in the origins of MS and ultimately lead to more efficient therapy for this debilitating disease.
Effective start/end date28/10/0831/12/10


  • Aminoacids
  • Parkinsons Disease
  • Neuro-Transmitters
  • Neuropharmacology
  • clinical pharmacy
  • Stroke
  • Receptors
  • Rat Models
  • Neurochemistry
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Microdialysis
  • neuroscience
  • Drug Research
  • Bioanalysis
  • Epilepsy
  • seamless care
  • Monoamines
  • Neurosciences
  • Liquid Chromatography
  • pharmaceutical care
  • Electrochemical Detection

Flemish discipline codes

  • (Bio)chemical engineering
  • Basic sciences
  • Health sciences
  • Pharmaceutical sciences