What if fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease?

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease that mainly affects women. The constant muscle and joint pain that characterizes them appears to be the work of the brain, but a recent study explored another avenue: autoimmunity.

About 2% of the European population is affected, most of whom are women FibromyalgiaIt is a poorly understood chronic disease characterized by pain Muscles and joints, general fatigue, sleep disturbances, poor mental health, are prone to anxiety and depression. The feeling of constant pain, exacerbated by cold, stress, or humidity, is associated with malfunctions in pain circuits in the brain and peripheral nervous system. Some patients also experience a deregulation of the immune system.

This is an immunogen Fibromyalgia Swedish and English researchers interested. They wondered whether autoantibodies, which attack the self, could be involved inAppearance of From Syndrome Disease keys. They publish the results of their experiments with mice in Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Passing fibromyalgia to mice

The hypothesis presented in this publication is as follows. While autoantibodies, specifically IgGs, have a role in fibromyalgia, healthy mice should show symptoms if they are injected with them. So they received an injection Serum of people with fibromyalgia that contain only IgG.

The rodents Developed fibromyalgia symptoms after this injection. They become more sensitive to cold or to mechanical stimuli, lose their vitality. Conversely, the serum of healthy subjects, or patients who lacked IgG, did not make the mice sick.

Association between autoantibodies and pain

How do these antibodies work? According to the authors’ conclusions, they do not activate sensory neurons, but it is fixed to glial cells The satellites, among other things, are located in the spinal ganglion of the rat. tests in the laboratory It also showed that these autoantibodies can also bind to them in humans.

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Thus, autoantibodies isolated from patients with fibromyalgia sensitize pain receptors located in the peripheral nervous system. They become hyperresponsive to stimuli and send pain signals to the brain.

There is currently no treatment to cure the cause of fibromyalgia. Support comes to nice exercises and the Antidepressants, but it does not work for many patients. A better understanding of the effects of immunology on this disease could open up new therapeutic avenues. Treatments aimed at reducing the amount of IgG in the serum, such as plasmapheresis, can improve the lives of patients, who are often deficient.

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