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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Inhibition of nitric oxide synthase initiates relapsing remitting experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis in rats, yet nitric oxide appears to be essential for clinical expression of disease.

Myelin basic protein-CFA-induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) in Lewis rats is an acute monophasic disease from which animals recover. In this model, spontaneous relapses do not occur and rats develop a resistance to further active reinduction of disease. Previously, we reported that oral administration of the NO synthase inhibitor N-methyl-L-arginine acetate (L-NMA) to recovered rats precipitated a second episode of disease in 100% of animals. Further studies now show that this second clinical episode is actually a chronic relapsing disease that persists for months. This occurs only in rats that have recovered from actively induced EAE and not in rats recovered from passively induced EAE, suggesting the need for a peripheral Ag depot to induce secondary disease. We have also determined that clinical signs of EAE in L-NMA-treated recovered rats do not appear until L-NMA treatment has stopped. This is despite the fact that, at the same time point, CNS inflammatory lesions in symptomless animals receiving L-NMA are qualitatively and quantitatively similar to those with severe disease symptoms from whom L-NMA treatment has been withdrawn. The latter animals have significantly higher levels of reactive nitrogen intermediates in the cerebrospinal fluid than the former group. This study examines the mechanism of reinduction of disease by L-NMA treatment, and the findings suggest a dual role for NO in regulation of pathology in EAE that is dependent on site and timing of NO production.[1]


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