Treatment with gamma-interferon triggers the onset of collagen arthritis in mice

Arthritis Rheum. 1988 Oct;31(10):1297-304. doi: 10.1002/art.1780311012.


We investigated the effect of gamma-interferon (gamma-IFN) on the development of type II collagen (CII)-induced arthritis. DBA/1 mice were immunized with rat CII and 16 days later, were treated with subcutaneous injections of recombinant rat gamma-IFN into the right paws twice a week. Compared with controls, the gamma-IFN-treated mice developed arthritis with a higher frequency and severity. Immunohistochemical analysis of gamma-IFN-treated paws from CII-immunized mice revealed an increase in the numbers of class II antigen-expressing cells and an infiltration of CD4+ lymphocyte-like cells. The auto-antibody response toward CII was suppressed by gamma-IFN treatment. The findings implicate gamma-IFN in a role that triggers arthritis by enhancing local inflammatory processes in the joints, or possibly, by permitting homing of T cells to the joints.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / immunology
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / pathology
  • Arthritis / chemically induced*
  • Arthritis, Experimental / chemically induced*
  • Arthritis, Experimental / immunology
  • Arthritis, Experimental / pathology
  • Collagen / adverse effects*
  • Collagen / immunology*
  • Immunization
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Interferon-gamma / pharmacology*
  • Joints / immunology
  • Joints / pathology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred DBA


  • Interferon-gamma
  • Collagen