Hypothalamic TLR2 triggers sickness behavior via a microglia-neuronal axis

Sci Rep. 2016 Jul 12;6:29424. doi: 10.1038/srep29424.

Abstract

Various pathophysiologic mechanisms leading to sickness behaviors have been proposed. For example, an inflammatory process in the hypothalamus has been implicated, but the signaling modalities that involve inflammatory mechanisms and neuronal circuit functions are ill-defined. Here, we show that toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) activation by intracerebroventricular injection of its ligand, Pam3CSK4, triggered hypothalamic inflammation and activation of arcuate nucleus microglia, resulting in altered input organization and increased activity of proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons. These animals developed sickness behavior symptoms, including anorexia, hypoactivity, and hyperthermia. Antagonists of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB), cyclooxygenase pathway and melanocortin receptors 3/4 reversed the anorexia and body weight loss induced by TLR2 activation. These results unmask an important role of TLR2 in the development of sickness behaviors via stimulation of hypothalamic microglia to promote POMC neuronal activation in association with hypothalamic inflammation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anorexia / pathology*
  • Arcuate Nucleus of Hypothalamus / pathology*
  • Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology
  • Fever / pathology*
  • Inflammation / pathology
  • Lipopeptides / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Microglia / metabolism
  • Myeloid Differentiation Factor 88 / genetics*
  • NF-kappa B / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Pro-Opiomelanocortin / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Receptor, Melanocortin, Type 3 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptor, Melanocortin, Type 4 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Toll-Like Receptor 2 / genetics*
  • Toll-Like Receptor 2 / metabolism*
  • Weight Loss / drug effects
  • Weight Loss / physiology

Substances

  • Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors
  • Lipopeptides
  • MC4R protein, mouse
  • Mc3r protein, mouse
  • Myd88 protein, mouse
  • Myeloid Differentiation Factor 88
  • NF-kappa B
  • Pam(3)CSK(4) peptide
  • Receptor, Melanocortin, Type 3
  • Receptor, Melanocortin, Type 4
  • Tlr2 protein, mouse
  • Toll-Like Receptor 2
  • Pro-Opiomelanocortin