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Sub-pyrogenic systemic inflammation impacts on brain and behavior, independent of cytokines

Teeling, J.L., Felton, L.M., Deacon, R.M.J., Cunningham, C., Rawlins, J.N.P. and Perry, V.H. (2007) Sub-pyrogenic systemic inflammation impacts on brain and behavior, independent of cytokines Brain, Behavior and Immunity, 21, (6), pp. 836-850. (doi:10.1016/j.bbi.2007.01.012).

Record type: Article


Systemic inflammation impacts on the brain and gives rise to behavioral changes, often referred to as ‘sickness behavior’. These symptoms are thought to be mainly mediated by pro-inflammatory cytokines. We have investigated the communication pathways between the immune system and brain following sub-pyrogenic inflammation. Low grade systemic inflammation was induced in mice using lipopolysaccharide (LPS); 1–100 ?g/kg to mimic aspects of bacterial infection. Changes in fever, open-field activity, burrowing and consumption of glucose solution were assessed and immune activation was studied in the periphery and brain by measuring cytokine production, and immunohistochemistry to study changes in immune cell phenotype. Sub-pyrogenic inflammation resulted in changes in a species-typical, untrained behavior (burrowing) that depends on the integrity of the hippocampus. Increased expression of cytokines was observed in the periphery and selected regions of the brain which coincided with changes in behavior. However, peripheral neutralization of LPS-induced pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1?, IL-6 and TNF-? did not abrogate the LPS-induced behavioral changes nor affect CNS cytokine synthesis. In contrast, pretreatment of mice with indomethacin completely prevented LPS-induced behavior changes, without affecting cytokine levels. Taken together, these experiments suggest a key role for prostaglandins, rather than cytokines, in communicating to the brain.

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Published date: August 2007
Keywords: cytokines, behavior, low grade sub-pyrogenic inflammation, prostaglandins


Local EPrints ID: 56381
ISSN: 0889-1591
PURE UUID: 6b0b537d-b027-414f-a574-158a9afcf302

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Date deposited: 07 Aug 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:31

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Author: J.L. Teeling
Author: L.M. Felton
Author: R.M.J. Deacon
Author: C. Cunningham
Author: J.N.P. Rawlins
Author: V.H. Perry

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