Dr.Toru Abo (安保 徹) is a prominent Japanese immunologist. He is renowned for his discovery of extrathymic T cell. He also discovers that the autonomic nervous system is responsible for the equilibrium of leukocytes (white blood cells).
* In 1989, he discovered that some T cells are developed in the liver, intestine and excretion glands. Those T cells are distinguished from conventional T cells developed in thymus and named “extrathymic T cell.”
* In 1996, he found that leukocytes, which play an important role in the immune system, are regulated by the autonomic nervous system. The harmonic interchange between the sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves in the autonomic nervous system keeps the balance of leukocytes. When the sympathetic is dominant, the number of granulocytes in leukocytes increases. When the parasympathetic is activated, on the other hand, the number of lymphocytes increases, the study reveals.
* In 2000, he revealed that gastric ulcer, an inflammatory disease, is triggered by the chronic dominance of granulocytes in white blood cells, not by the gastric acid hypersecretion.
His findings suggest how the stress affects the immune system. The autonomic nervous system becomes disturbed and out-of-balance when the sympathetic nerve has been stayed on guard against the long-term stress, which hinders the white-blood-cell mediated immune function. The chronic exposure to the stress depresses the immune system.
Dr. Abo asserts that the most important thing you can do for your immune system is to achieve lifestyle balance and reduce stress in your living. This will give your immune system what it needs to function at optimal capacity to prevent and remedy diseases.