While complement activation and its interaction withmicroglial cells appear necessary for brain wiring during the postnatal period, recent evidence indicate that when this developmental program becomes aberrant in the immature brain or is recapitulated during adulthood molecular cascades related to neurodegenerative processes may be initiated (Stephan et al.2012). For example, during the postnatal period, the inappropriate activation of the complement cascade causes profound synapse elimination that leads to neuropsychiatric diseases, such as autism or schizophrenia (Maternal infection and immune involvement in autism, 2011).
Patterson, P. H. (2011). Maternal infection and immune involvement in autism.
Trends Mol. Med.
17, 389–394. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2011.03.001
Pavlov, V. I., Skjoedt, M.-O., Siow Tan, Y., Rosbjerg, A., Garred, P., and