This research was supported by grants from the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health (MH46261) and the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke (NS25370). We thank Synergen (Amgen) for the generous gift of IL-1ra.
The Role of Cytokines in Infection-Related Behaviora
Article first published online: 7 FEB 2006
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Volume 840, NEUROIMMUNOMODULATION: MOLECULAR ASPECTS, INTEGRATIVE SYSTEMS, AND CLINICAL ADVANCES pages 577–585, May 1998
How to Cite
DUNN, A. J. and SWIERGIEL, A. H. (1998), The Role of Cytokines in Infection-Related Behavior. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 840: 577–585. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.1998.tb09596.x
- Issue published online: 7 FEB 2006
- Article first published online: 7 FEB 2006
Abstract: Infections are associated with a specific behavioral pattern that includes hypomotility, hypophagia, increased sleep, decreased libido, and decreased exploration. This behavioral response is considered adaptive and important for the survival of the animal. A similar behavioral pattern was observed following treatment with endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide [LPS]) and cytokines, such as interleukin-1 (IL-1). Because the secretion of these cytokines is induced by LPS and infections, it is possible that they mediate the behavioral responses to infection. We have studied ingestive behavior and locomotor activity in mice following infection with influenza virus, or injection of LPS, IL-1, or IL-6. A lethal dose of influenza virus, LPS, IL-1a and IL-1b each decreased the intake of sweetened condensed milk and 24-hour food pellet intake and decreased locomotor activity. Mouse IL-6 was ineffective. A sublethal dose of influenza virus decreased food pellet intake and locomotor activity, but did not significantly alter milk intake. Indomethacin prevented the behavioral responses to IL-1, and attenuated those to LPS, but had only a very small effect on those to influenza virus. Similar results were obtained with the IL-1-receptor antagonist (IL-1ra); it completely prevented the responses to IL-1, attenuated those to LPS, but, even after chronic high dose administration, attenuated the effects of influenza virus infection only slightly. Our results suggest that while IL-1 may play an important role in the responses to infection, IL-6 does not. Moreover, IL-1 cannot be the only factor contributing to the altered behavior of LPS-injected or influenza virus-infected mice.