Peripheral nerve injury (PNI) leads to a series of cellular and molecular events necessary for axon regeneration and reinnervation of target tissues, among which inflammation is crucial for the orchestration of all these processes. Macrophage activation underlies the pathogenesis of PNI and is characterized by morphological/phenotype transformation from proinflammatory (M1) to an anti-inflammatory (M2) type with different functions in the inflammatory and reparative process. The aim of this study was to evaluate influence of the vitamin B (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B12) complex on the process of neuroinflammation that is in part regulated by l-type CaV1.2 calcium channels. A controlled transection of the motor branch of the femoral peripheral nerve was used as an experimental model. Animals were sacrificed after 1, 3, 7, and 14 injections of vitamin B complex. Isolated nerves were used for immunofluorescence analysis. Treatment with vitamin B complex decreased expression of proinflammatory and increased expression of anti-inflammatory cytokines, thus contributing to the resolution of neuroinflammation. In parallel, B vitamins decreased the number of M1 macrophages that expressed the CaV1.2 channel, and increased the number of M2 macrophages that expressed this channel, suggesting their role in M1/M2 transition after PNI. In conclusion, B vitamins had the potential for treatment of neuroinflammation and neuroregeneration and thereby might be an effective therapy for PNI in humans.
Keywords: M1/M2 macrophages; calcium channels; neuroinflammation; peripheral nerve injury; regeneration; vitamin B complex therapy.