Resistance to fever induction and impaired acute-phase response in interleukin-1 beta-deficient mice

Immunity. 1995 Jul;3(1):9-19. doi: 10.1016/1074-7613(95)90154-x.


We used gene targeting in embryonic stem cells to introduce an IL-1 beta null allele in mice. The IL-1 beta-deficient mice develop normally and are apparently healthy and fertile. The IL-1 beta null mice responded normally in models of contact and delayed-type hypersensitivity or following bacterial endotoxin LPS-induced inflammation. The IL-1 beta-deficient mice showed equivalent resistance to Listeria monocytogenes compared with wild-type controls. In contrast, when challenged with turpentine, which causes localized inflammation and tissue injury, the IL-1 beta mutant mice exhibited an impaired acute-phase inflammatory response and were completely resistant to fever development and anorexia. These results highlight a central role for IL-1 beta as a pyrogen and a mediator of the acute-phase response in a subset of inflammatory disease models, and support the notion that blocking the action of a single key cytokine can alter the course of specific immune and inflammatory responses.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Acute-Phase Reaction / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cytokines / biosynthesis
  • Fever / metabolism*
  • Fever / prevention & control
  • Interleukin-1 / deficiency*
  • Lipopolysaccharides / administration & dosage
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic


  • Cytokines
  • Interleukin-1
  • Lipopolysaccharides