Redefining Autoimmune Disorders’ Pathoetiology: Implications for Mood and Psychotic Disorders’ Association with Neurodegenerative and Classical Autoimmune Disorders

George Anderson, Abbas F. Almulla, Russel J. Reiter, Michael Maes

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Although previously restricted to a limited number of medical conditions, there is a growing appreciation that ‘autoimmune’ (or immune-mediated) processes are important aspects of a wide array of diverse medical conditions, including cancers, neurodegenerative diseases and psychiatric disorders. All of these classes of medical conditions are associated with alterations in mitochondrial function across an array of diverse cell types. Accumulating data indicate the presence of the mitochondrial melatonergic pathway in possibly all body cells, with important consequences for pathways crucial in driving CD8+ T cell and B-cell ‘autoimmune’-linked processes. Melatonin suppression coupled with the upregulation of oxidative stress suppress PTEN-induced kinase 1 (PINK1)/parkin-driven mitophagy, raising the levels of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-1, which underpins the chemoattraction of CD8+ T cells and the activation of antibody-producing B-cells. Many factors and processes closely associated with autoimmunity, including gut microbiome/permeability, circadian rhythms, aging, the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its receptor tyrosine receptor kinase B (TrkB) all interact with the mitochondrial melatonergic pathway. A number of future research directions and novel treatment implications are indicated for this wide collection of poorly conceptualized and treated medical presentations. It is proposed that the etiology of many ‘autoimmune’/‘immune-mediated’ disorders should be conceptualized as significantly determined by mitochondrial dysregulation, with alterations in the mitochondrial melatonergic pathway being an important aspect of these pathoetiologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1237
JournalCells
Volume12
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2023
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • N-acetylserotonin
  • TrkB
  • aryl hydrocarbon receptor
  • autoimmunity
  • cancer
  • circadian
  • gut microbiome
  • melatonin
  • mitochondria
  • treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

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