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      Potentiation of Interleukin-1β Adjuvant Effects on the Humoral Immune Response to Antigen in Adrenalectomized Mice

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          Objectives: Activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is a primary effect of interleukin-1 (IL-1), with elevated glucocorticoids considered a mechanism for negative feedback immunoregulation. However, there is little direct evidence of such a functional relationship between IL-1-mediated immunoregulation and neuroendocrine influences elicited by IL-1. Therefore, the goal of this study was to examine whether the known adjuvant effects of IL-1 are altered in the absence of neuroendocrine feedback due to adrenalectomy. Methods: Male BALB/c mice subjected to adrenalectomy (ADX) or sham surgery were administered with saline or recombinant human IL-1β (rhIL-1β) and at the same time immunized with 100 µg ovalbumin (OVA). In vivo and in vitro measures of antigen-specific IgG antibody production, IL-6 production and spleen cell proliferation were taken 6 and 12 days later. Results: It was demonstrated that administration of rhIL-1β at a dose that activates the HPA axis resulted in a significant augmentation of serum anti- OVA IgG antibody levels. Interestingly, this augmentation was potentiated in ADX animals. In addition, the in vitro spleen cell memory IgG antibody response to OVA was significantly augmented in rhIL-1β-treated animals, and again, further potentiated in ADX animals. Interestingly, while hrIL-1β treatment augmented antigen-stimulated IL-6 production – suggesting an effect of IL-1 on antigen-specific T helper 2 cell memory formation – potentiation was not evident in ADX animals. Conclusions: These results are consistent with the concept of HPA axis-mediated neuroendocrine feedback on excessive immune responsiveness due to IL-1. Such feedback may prevent disturbances to the self-limiting functions of the immune system, which are important to the prevention of autoimmune diseases, some of which involve elevated IL-1 production.

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          Most cited references 6

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          Development of Chronic Inflammatory Arthropathy Resembling Rheumatoid Arthritis in Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist–Deficient Mice

          Interleukin (IL)-1 is a proinflammatory cytokine that plays important roles in inflammation, host defense, and the neuro-immuno-endocrine network. IL-1 receptor antagonist (ra) is an endogenous inhibitor of IL-1 and is supposed to regulate IL-1 activity. However, its pathophysiological roles in a body remain largely unknown. To elucidate the roles of IL-1ra, IL-1ra–deficient mice were produced by gene targeting, and pathology was analyzed on different genetic backgrounds. We found that all of the mice on a BALB/cA background, but not those on a C57BL/6J background, spontaneously developed chronic inflammatory polyarthropathy. Histopathology showed marked synovial and periarticular inflammation, with articular erosion caused by invasion of granulation tissues closely resembling that of rheumatoid arthritis in humans. Moreover, elevated levels of antibodies against immunoglobulins, type II collagen, and double-stranded DNA were detected in these mice, suggesting development of autoimmunity. Proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-1β, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor α were overexpressed in the joints, indicating regulatory roles of IL-1ra in the cytokine network. We thus show that IL-1ra gene deficiency causes autoimmunity and joint-specific inflammation and suggest that IL-1ra is important in maintaining homeostasis of the immune system. Possible involvement of IL-1ra gene deficiency in RA will be discussed.
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            Arterial Inflammation in Mice Lacking the Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Gene

            Branch points and flexures in the high pressure arterial system have long been recognized as sites of unusually high turbulence and consequent stress in humans are foci for atherosclerotic lesions. We show that mice that are homozygous for a null mutation in the gene encoding an endogenous antiinflammatory cytokine, interleukin 1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra), develop lethal arterial inflammation involving branch points and flexures of the aorta and its primary and secondary branches. We observe massive transmural infiltration of neutrophils, macrophages, and CD4+ T cells. Animals appear to die from vessel wall collapse, stenosis, and organ infarction or from hemorrhage from ruptured aneurysms. Heterozygotes do not die from arteritis within a year of birth but do develop small lesions, which suggests that a reduced level of IL-1ra is insufficient to fully control inflammation in arteries. Our results demonstrate a surprisingly specific role for IL-1ra in the control of spontaneous inflammation in constitutively stressed artery walls, suggesting that expression of IL-1 is likely to have a significant role in signaling artery wall damage.
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              Spontaneous recovery of rats from experimental allergic encephalomyelitis is dependent on regulation of the immune system by endogenous adrenal corticosteroids

               FA Antoni,  DW Mason (1989)
              Lewis rats with experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE), induced either by the subcutaneous injection of guinea pig myelin basic protein (MBP) or by the adoptive transfer of MBP-primed spleen cells, suffer from a single episode of paralysis from which they recover spontaneously. Animals developing EAE were found to have greatly elevated levels of corticosterone in the blood. This endogenous increase in steroid production was accompanied by lymphopenia and depressed delayed-type hypersensitivity responses to OVA, indicating that rats with EAE are immunosuppressed in an antigen-nonspecific fashion. Adrenalectomized rats given subcutaneous implants of corticosterone to maintain basal steroid levels invariably died when EAE was induced. However, if the steroid replacement therapy was adjusted to mimic the hormone levels that were observed in intact rats developing EAE, then the disease followed a nonfatal course closely resembling that seen in the nonadrenalectomized controls. Replacement therapy that achieved serum corticosterone levels slightly higher than those found in intact rats with EAE virtually suppressed the disease completely. It is concluded that endogenous corticosterone release in rats with EAE plays an essential role in the spontaneous recovery that is observed in this condition. However, the subsequent refractory phase that is characteristic of rats that have recovered from EAE induced by active immunization with MBP is not associated with chronically elevated corticosterone levels. This finding is discussed in the light of other data that suggest that unlike the spontaneous recovery, the refractory state has an immunological basis rather than an endocrinological basis.

                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                September 2001
                14 September 2001
                : 9
                : 2
                : 109-118
                Department of Psychology, Biopsychology and Behavioral Neuroscience Program, Rutgers University, Piscataway, N.J., USA
                49014 Neuroimmunomodulation 2001;9:109–118
                © 2001 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 6, References: 33, Pages: 10
                Original Paper


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