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

Cytokine gene expression during experimental Escherichia coli pyelonephritis in mice.

PURPOSE: We studied nine inflammatory and immunoregulatory cytokines in acute pyelonephritis and urethral obstruction in mice to better understand the processes underlying kidney inflammation and scarring. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Experimental acute pyelonephritis was established in Bki NMRI outbred mice by bladder inoculation of Escherichia coli, followed by 6 h urethral obstruction. The numbers of cytokine mRNA expressing cells for interleukin-1 (IL-1), IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-12, tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), TNF-beta, transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) and interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) were determined in the kidneys and spleens from the infected, non-infected but obstructed and untouched mice using in situ hybridization with radio-labelled oligonucleotide probes at 12 h, 48 h and 6 d after release of the urethral obstruction. RESULTS: Kidney cell expression of IL-1, IL-6 and TNF-alpha mRNA was observed already at 12 h and persisted on day 6 in the infected animals. A significant proinflammatory cytokine response occurred also in the non-infected obstructed animals, albeit later and at lower levels. A marked increase of IL-4, IL-10, TGF-beta and IFN-gamma mRNA producing cells was also found in the kidneys of these two groups again with higher levels in the infected animals. Very high numbers of splenocytes expressing mRNA for IL-1 were observed especially in the infected animals. A high proportion of splenocytes further expressed mRNA for IL-6, TNF-alpha, IL-4, IL-10, IFN-gamma and TGF-beta, again with highest numbers in the infected group of animals. CONCLUSIONS: The present study extends previous knowledge about the local and systemic cytokine expression profiles during acute pyelonephritis and after urethral obstruction. Of particular interest was the marked kidney cell expression of mRNA for TGF-beta, presumed to be important both for obstructive and post-infectious renal scarring.[1]


  1. Cytokine gene expression during experimental Escherichia coli pyelonephritis in mice. Khalil, A., Brauner, A., Bakhiet, M., Burman, L.G., Jaremko, G., Wretlind, B., Tullus, K. J. Urol. (1997) [Pubmed]
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