Exacerbation of acute inflammatory arthritis by the colony-stimulating factors CSF-1 and granulocyte macrophage (GM)-CSF: evidence of macrophage infiltration and local proliferation

Clin Exp Immunol. 2000 Feb;119(2):361-7. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2249.2000.01125.x.


CSF-1 and GM-CSF have been implicated in the pathogenesis of rheumatoid arthritis. We report the effects of CSF-1 and GM-CSF in the development of an acute methylated bovine serum albumin (mBSA)-induced murine arthritis model. Examination of histopathological features revealed that the systemic administration of CSF-1 or GM-CSF following mBSA administration into the knee resulted in the exacerbation of arthritis. This included synovial hyperplasia and joint inflammation, most evident at 7 and 14 days post-mBSA administration, and the appearance of erosive pannus tissue. The exacerbation by CSF-1 and GM-CSF was not sustained but declined in incidence and severity by 21 days post-mBSA administration, similar to the effects of IL-1beta in this model, reported here and previously. Macrophages expressing Mac-2 and F4/80 were a prominent feature of the pathology observed, particularly the infiltration of Mac-2+ macrophages seen in all mice administered CSF-1, GM-CSF or IL-1beta. Present in inflamed knees was a locally dividing population of cells which included Mac-2+ and F4/80+ macrophages. These studies demonstrate that CSF-1 and GM-CSF can exacerbate and prolong the histopathology of acute inflammatory arthritis and lend support to monocytes/macrophages being a driving influence in the pathogenesis of inflammatory arthritis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Animals
  • Arthritis, Experimental / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Experimental / pathology
  • Cell Division / immunology
  • Cell Movement / immunology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / immunology
  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / toxicity*
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1 / immunology
  • Interleukin-1 / toxicity
  • Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / immunology
  • Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor / toxicity*
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Macrophages / pathology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL


  • Interleukin-1
  • Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor
  • Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor