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Expression of Interleukin-16 in Sciatic Nerves, Spinal Roots and Spinal Cords of Experimental Autoimmune Neuritis Rats

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Abstract

Experimental autoimmune neuritis (EAN) is a well-known animal model of Guillain-Barré Syndrome. In this study, we studied the spatiotemporal expression of interleukin-16 (IL-16) in the nervous system of EAN rats and pharmacological effects of minocycline on IL-16 expressions in EAN rats. In sciatic nerves and dorsal/ventral roots of EAN rats, IL-16+ cells, identified as macrophages and T cells, were mainly found to concentrate around blood vessels. However, in spinal cords, IL-16+ microglial cells were mainly found in lumbar dorsal horns. Massive IL-16+ cell accumulation in sciatic nerves and spinal roots was temporally correlated with severity of neurological signs of EAN. Furthermore, a strong correlation of IL-16+ cell accumulation with local demyelination in perivascular areas of sciatic nerves, and significant reduction of IL-16+ cell numbers in sciatic nerves and spinal cords by minocycline suggested a pathological contribution of IL-16+ cells in EAN. Taken together, robust IL-16+ cell accumulation in the nervous system and its temporal correlation with severity of neurological signs in EAN might suggest a pathological role of IL-16 in EAN, which makes IL-16 a potential pharmacological target.
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Keywords: EAN; IL-16; T lymphocyte; macrophage

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2009

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