Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

INTRODUCTION: The impact of pro-inflammatory cytokines on neuroinflammation and cognitive function after lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenge remains elusive. Herein we provide evidence that there is a temporal correlation between high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB-1), microglial activation, and cognitive dysfunction. Disabling the interleukin (IL)-1 signaling pathway is sufficient to reduce inflammation and ameliorate the disability. METHODS: Endotoxemia was induced in wild-type and IL-1R-/- mice by intra peritoneal injection of E. Coli LPS (1 mg/kg). Markers of inflammation were assessed both peripherally and centrally, and correlated to behavioral outcome using trace fear conditioning. RESULTS: Increase in plasma tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha) peaked at 30 minutes after LPS challenge. Up-regulation of IL-1beta, IL-6 and HMGB-1 was more persistent, with detectable levels up to day three. A 15-fold increase in IL-6 and a 6.5-fold increase in IL-1beta mRNA at 6 hours post intervention (P < 0.001 respectively) was found in the hippocampus. Reactive microgliosis was observed both at days one and three, and was associated with elevated HMGB-1 and impaired memory retention (P < 0.005). Preemptive administration of IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra) significantly reduced plasma cytokines and hippocampal microgliosis and ameliorated cognitive dysfunction without affecting HMGB-1 levels. Similar results were observed in LPS-challenged mice lacking the IL-1 receptor to those seen in LPS-challenged wild type mice treated with IL-1Ra. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that by blocking IL-1 signaling, the inflammatory cascade to LPS is attenuated, thereby reducing microglial activation and preventing the behavioral abnormality.

Original publication




Journal article


Crit Care

Publication Date





Animals, Cognition Disorders, Cytokines, Endotoxemia, Escherichia coli, HMGB1 Protein, Hippocampus, Interleukin-1, Lipopolysaccharides, Mice, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Microglia, Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha