Animal models of immune-mediated neuropathies

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Purpose of reviewThis article gives an overview on animal models for immune-mediated demyelinating disorders of the peripheral nervous system. As insight into human disease is mainly based on biopsy material and ex-vivo analysis, an understanding of the pathogenetic mechanism of these complex and heterogeneous disorders is mainly based on animal models.Recent findingsBesides experimental autoimmune neuritis in rats, recent efforts to establish this model in mice are discussed. In addition, models for spontaneous autoimmune neuropathies and secondary immune reactions in degenerative disorders of the peripheral nervous system are reviewed.SummaryRecently described animal models offer the possibility to analyse the complex interaction of genetic and immunological factors. The entire panel of animal models for immune-mediated disorders of the peripheral nervous system provides a rational basis for studying the mechanisms of pathogenesis and new immunotherapeutic strategies for human autoimmune demyelinating neuropathies.

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