Diet modulates Th-1 and Th-2 cytokine production in the peripheral blood of lupus-prone mice

J Clin Immunol. 1999 May;19(3):172-8. doi: 10.1023/a:1020503727157.


Calorie restriction or fish oil extends life span. To investigate the potential mechanism(s) involved, young (4-month) and old (9-month) NZB x NZW(F1) mice were fed 5% (w/w) corn oil (CA) or fish oil (FA) ad libitum or 40% restricted (CR and FR, respectively). Peripheral blood T-lymphocytes were analyzed for Th-1 (IL-2, IFN-gamma) and Th-2 (IL-5, IL-10) production. CR and FA partially blunted while FR completely abolished the decline in aged CD4+ T lymphocytes. In contrast, both CR and FR abolished the decline in CD8+ T lymphocytes with age, while FA had no effect. In aged mice, both CR and FR blunted the increase in Th-1 (IL-2, IFN-gamma) cytokine production, while FA was only partially effective. Only FR completely blunted the age-related increase in Th-2 (IL-5, IL-10) cytokine production. These data suggest that FR delays the onset of autoimmune kidney disease by suppressing both Th-1 and Th-2 cytokine production.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aging / immunology
  • Animals
  • CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Corn Oil / administration & dosage
  • Cytokines / biosynthesis*
  • Diet*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Energy Intake
  • Female
  • Fish Oils / administration & dosage
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / immunology*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / prevention & control
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred NZB
  • Th1 Cells / immunology*
  • Th2 Cells / immunology*


  • Cytokines
  • Fish Oils
  • Corn Oil