Antagonism of the interleukin-1 receptor following traumatic brain injury in the mouse reduces the number of nitric oxide synthase-2-positive cells and improves anatomical and functional outcomes

Nigel C. Jones, Malcolm J W Prior, Esther Burden-Teh, Charles A. Marsden, Peter G. Morris, Sean Murphy

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Interleukin (IL)-1β plays an important role in the inflammatory response that results from traumatic brain injury and antagonism of the actions of this cytokine can affect outcome. We subjected male mice to aseptic cryogenic injury and assessed recovery through anatomical, histological and functional measures following treatment with recombinant mouse IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra). A single dose (1 μg, i.c.v.) at the time of injury reduced lesion volume 3 days later, as assessed by Nissl staining, and also the number (30%) of FluoroJade-positive degenerating neurones. Mice treated with IL-1ra performed better on the beam balance and in the grid test as compared with vehicle-treated animals. Furthermore, IL-1ra-treated animals showed fewer (40%) nitric oxide synthase-2-positive cells in and around the lesion. These data suggest that activation of the IL-1 receptor following trauma contributes to the pathology and that antagonism can reduce both anatomical and functional consequences of neuroinflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-78
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Neuroscience
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Behaviour
  • Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Nitric oxide synthase-2
  • Trauma

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