The objective of our study was to determine granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) activity in the brain following GM-CSF induction. We injected recombinant mouse GM-CSF into the brains of 8-month-old C57BL6 mice via intracerebroventricular injections and studied the activities of microglia, astrocytes, and neurons. We also sought to determine whether an anti-GM-CSF antibody could suppress endogenous microglial activity in the C57BL6 mice and could also suppress microglial activity induced by the recombinant mouse GM-CSF in another group of C57BL6 mice. Using quantitative real-time RT-PCR, we assessed microglial, astrocytic, and neuronal activity by measuring mRNA expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, GFAP, and the neuronal marker NeuN in the cerebral cortex tissues from C57BL6 mice. We performed immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry of activated microglia in different regions of the brains from control (phosphate-buffered saline-injected C57BL6 mice) and experimental mice (recombinant GM-CSF-injected C57BL6 mice, GM-CSF antibody-injected C57BL6 mice, and recombinant mouse GM-CSF plus anti-GM-CSF antibody-injected C57BL6 mice). We found increased mRNA expression of CD40 (9.75-fold), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (2.1-fold), CD45 (1.73-fold), and CD11c (1.70-fold) in the cerebral cortex of C57BL6 mice that were induced with recombinant GM-CSF, compared with control mice. Further, the anti-GM-CSF antibody suppressed microglia in mice that were induced with recombinant GM-CSF. Our immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry findings of GM-CSF-associated cytokines in C57BL6 mice induced with recombinant GM-CSF, in C57BL6 mice injected with the anti-GM-CSF antibody, and in C57BL6 mice injected with recombinant mouse GM-CSF plus anti-GM-CSF antibody concurred with our real-time RT-PCR findings. These findings suggest that GM-CSF is critical for microglial activation and that anti-GM-CSF antibody suppresses microglial activity in the CNS. The findings from this study may have implications for anti-inflammatory effects of Alzheimer's disease and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis mice (a multiple sclerosis mouse model).
- Neurodegenerative disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience