Mast cells (MCs) are tissue cells that are derived from bone marrow stem cells that contribute to allergic reactions, inflammatory diseases, innate and adaptive immunity, autoimmunity, and mental disorders. MCs located near the meninges communicate with microglia through the production of mediators such as histamine and tryptase, but also through the secretion of IL-1, IL-6 and TNF, which can create pathological effects in the brain. Preformed chemical mediators of inflammation and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) are rapidly released from the granules of MCs, the only immune cells capable of storing the cytokine TNF, although it can also be produced later through mRNA. The role of MCs in nervous system diseases has been extensively studied and reported in the scientific literature; it is of great clinical interest. However, many of the published articles concern studies on animals (mainly rats or mice) and not on humans. MCs are known to interact with neuropeptides that mediate endothelial cell activation, resulting in central nervous system (CNS) inflammatory disorders. In the brain, MCs interact with neurons causing neuronal excitation with the production of neuropeptides and the release of inflammatory mediators such as cytokines and chemokines. This article explores the current understanding of MC activation by neuropeptide substance P (SP), corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), and neurotensin, and the role of pro-inflammatory cytokines, suggesting a therapeutic effect of the anti-inflammatory cytokines IL-37 and IL-38.
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